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We must defend better - Redpath

Gloucester boss Bryan Redpath has demanded a tighter defensive performance in Tuesday night's Aviva Premiership clash with Northampton.

The Cherry and Whites came from 14 points down to snatch a dramatic 41-41 draw with Premiership leaders Leicester at Welford Road on Saturday. But the Tigers gifted Gloucester a way back into the game and Redpath warned his men cannot expect key play-off rivals Northampton to be so generous.

The Saints are second only to Leicester in the Premiership try-scoring charts and Redpath said: "This part of the season is about defensive discipline and against Leicester that wasn't good enough. We conceded soft tries and Leicester finished them well but we aren't going to get the opportunities we had all the time."

He added: "To be competitive against Northampton and Saracens in the next seven days we need to defend better and make sure we carry that same hunger with us."

The fixture has been re-arranged from Boxing Day and it is not ideal for either team to be playing three games in eight days so near to the end of the season.

Both sides have rung the changes. Only four members of the Gloucester team - Dave Attwood, Freddie Burns, Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu and Jonny May - asked to start again following the epic draw at Welford Road.

Northampton have made 14 changes from their victory at Newcastle with only Bruce Reihana retained in the side, although he switches from wing to full-back.

Gloucester have an imposing 17-game unbeaten record but Northampton are unbeaten in five and know they can take third place in the table with a victory at Kingsholm.

"We want a place in the Premiership play-offs and we also know that the only way to make sure that we're in the top four is to keep on winning," said boss Jim Mallinder.

"We will need to perform well if we want to bring anything home. Gloucester showed plenty of character and quality in coming back to draw at Welford Road on Saturday, and Kingsholm is always a difficult place to play."


From Belfast Telegraph