Sale Sharks’ director of rugby Steve Diamond expects a reaction from his side at tonight’s game against Newcastle and is hoping they can address the issues of last weekend’s Wasps loss.
Sale face the Falcons in their first Premiership home game of the season at the AJ Bell Stadium (7:45pm) after last Saturday’s 50-35 defeat to Wasps – where they conceded seven tries despite scoring five themselves.
Diamond has a fully-fit squad to pick from with the exception of James O’Connor and although Newcastle triumphed 35-8 against Worcester last weekend he is confident of a win.
“Newcastle are a good side. They have got their act together over the past couple of years with Dean (Richards – director of rugby) and they will be difficult opposition,” said Diamond.
“If we sort our defence out, which we hopefully have over this past couple of days, we’ll be a difficult side to beat at home.
“Our endeavour at Wasps was good. I think we broke every record on our GPS units and we ran more miles in that game than in any other over the past couple of years.
“So we know that we are fit – we just made some basic errors.”
Diamond emphasised the importance of making the AJ Bell a fortress again – something Sale have managed in recent seasons but let slip somewhat en route to a 10th-placed finish last season.
“The key in this competition is to win your home games and to pick up bonus points away from home.
“If you can win 90 per cent of your home games and claim a couple of wins on the road along with bonus points then you are pushing for the top four.”
Sale next face London Irish at home the following Friday evening before an away trip to European champions Saracens.
Match tickets and parking passes are available from the Sale Sharks website: http://www.salesharks.com/tickets
Image courtesy of Sale Sharks via YouTube, with thanks.