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We're desperate to soothe away-day blues, admits Kiss

By Jonathan Bradley

Ulster Director of Rugby Les Kiss has admitted his side's away form is a cause for concern ahead of tomorrow's must-win contest with Exeter.

Exeter's steady climb from the second tier of English rugby to Premiership finalists under Rob Baxter has seen Sandy Park become a much-feared venue for opposing teams, but Ulster know they will need to storm the fortress to have any hope of advancing to the Champions Cup quarter finals.

"Our away form hasn't been as we'd have liked, so we need to stand up," said Kiss as his side aim for their first win away from Kingspan this European campaign. "It's not easy playing number three in the Premiership (table).

"They're a well-resourced team and are going well in the competition. Against Bordeaux they did a really good job on both games, albeit they only won one.

"They're a team to be reckoned with, for sure. It becomes massive, that's the team you've to prove your away form against.

"In one sense that's not ideal but in another sense, ideal.

"That's what you want, the big challenge."

Having lost seven of the last 11 home or away, and come out the wrong side against Scarlets a week ago after conceding a late penalty try, Kiss believes his players are still hanging on to their confidence ahead of a big run of fixtures.

"I think confidence becomes key, it's about being able to back yourself," he added.

"There were a couple of opportunities where we should have just nailed it last week.

"You just probably over-read things at times. They're not lacking in confidence, I can say that.

"You just need something to get that nice good feeling back.

"It's been a searching week no doubt, and you can understand why.

"It wasn't the results we wanted and if we were a bit more clinical in the second-half (last time) we'd probably have won and taken the (referee's decision) out of it, but that's what we have to live with and we have to make sure that we do the right things to make sure we can turn that round."

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