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Match Reaction: Gloucester Rugby 32 Newcastle Falcons 6

Newcastle Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards conceded the late withdrawal of veteran fly-half Andy Goode played its part in defeat to Gloucester Rugby.

Goode, who came out of retirement this season to inspire Newcastle to a string of impressive recent wins, was replaced by Craig Willis in the starting XV shortly before kick-off.

The Falcons endured a slow start at Kingsholm and they were 25-6 behind at half time, with Billy Meakes, James Hook and Ross Moriarty each crossing over.

Gloucester had to wait until the final ten minutes for the bonus-point score but it arrived, through Tom Savage, and Richards was left deflated by his side’s showing.

"Andy has been struggling all week,” he said. “He is knackered so common sense prevailed.

“We made a number of changes from last week and we were hoping that the change would have been seamless but unfortunately it wasn't.

"The first half killed us as we got on the wrong side of the referee, we gave away easy penalties and being 25-6 down at the interval we had no chance.

"The boys are disappointed, they are a far better side than that and we'll just have to put a line under that game."

Next up for the Falcons is a home clash with Worcester Warriors next Friday and with both sides near the foot of the Aviva Premiership Rugby, Richards is expecting a much-improved performance.

He added: "We should have Andy back for Friday and Sean Robinson as well. Sinoti Sinoti had a good 20 minutes today. Will Welch tweaked a knee so we stopped him coming out for the second half as a precaution."

Gloucester, meanwhile, moved into seventh in the Aviva Premiership Rugby table with the bonus-point win and just three points behind third-placed Wasps.

And director of rugby David Humphreys could have few complaints with the way his charges went about their business, bouncing back from defeat to Saracens last week.

"In the first half we were very good, our set-piece and ambition to play was outstanding,” he said.

“After last week there was a huge sense of frustration but we played very well against a form team in the Premiership and deserved our bonus-point win.

"The second half was frustrating as we turned the ball over far too much, which stopped us building up pressure.

“The expectation around the crowd placed a great weight on our shoulders but we remained patient and there were a huge sense of relief when we got the fourth try."
 
Scorers
 
Gloucester Rugby

Tries: Meakes, Hook, Moriarty, Savage
Conversions: Hook 2, Twelvetrees
Penalties: Hook 2
 
Newcastle Falcons
Penalties: Willis 2
 
Gloucester Rugby: Cook; Sharples, Meakes (Trinder 51), Twelvetrees, Purdy; Hook (Burns 63), Heinz (Braley 40); McAllister (Thomas 51), Hibbard (Dawidiuk 54), Afoa (Doran-Jones 59); Thrush (Savage 59), Galarza; Moriarty, Rowan (Kvesic 1), Ludlow
 
Newcastle Falcons: Hammersley; Venditti (Sinoti 56), Harris (Socino 63), Powell, Watson; Willis, Takalua (Young 55); Vickers (Rogers 61), Lawson (McGuigan 68), Vea (Hatakeyama 57); Green, Wilson; Mayhew (Clever 27), Welch (Botha 40), Hogg
 
Referee: Dean Richards
Attendance:  11,095
 

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