Northampton Saints may have had an up and down start to the new season but fly-half Stephen Myler expects this to quickly become the norm in Aviva Premiership Rugby, such is the depth of talent throughout the league.
The Saints have won just two of six games so far despite having the league’s third-best defence, and face Gloucester Rugby on Friday night in a crunch clash at Franklin’s Gardens.
The home side are coming off the back of a heavy 41-7 defeat to Castres in the European Champions Cup, and sit bottom of a group that also includes Leinster and Montpellier.
Aviva Premiership Rugby teams strengthened like never before last summer – with Saints bringing in talismanic France No.8 Louis Picamoles.
And Myler insists that as more top players arrive, the more difficult even the best sides will find building a head of steam.
“You look at the strength of the teams across the league and everyone is getting stronger squads which make it harder to be consistent because everyone beats everyone, and it’s a level playing field,” he said.
“Gloucester believe they can do better and are aiming to do better like we are but we are looking to control things and go and win the game, which will be very tough.
“It is frustrating we have not been at the same level every week and we need to get to that, but on Friday we are desperate for a good performance and the win.
“There are a number of reasons why. It could be the conditions, it could be individual errors and I think against Castres there were various little incidents which snowballed and you think ‘how did that happen’, but we need to recognise and learn from it and do it better from now on.”
Saints fans have only seen their side win once at home in the league this season following defeats to Bath Rugby and Wasps.
And Myler has called on the Franklin’s Gardens faithful to give them the extra boost they need as they look to put that heavy Castres defeat behind them.
“We want to give everything we have to get a victory and I am sure the fans will be behind us, and that feeling we get from them is massive because they are second to none and I am sure it will drive us on,” he said.
“It was noisy (in the victory) against Montpellier and it does not matter if that is what it takes because it was nice to be involved in that.
“Those are situations we want to be part of.”
— BBC Northampton (@BBCNorthampton) October 19, 2016