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Preview: London Irish v Newcastle Falcons

Preview: London Irish v Newcastle Falcons

Newcastle Falcons lock Joshua Furno admits his side will be in town to spoil the party when they travel to London Irish on Saturday.

The clash sees two of the Aviva Premiership Rugby’s bottom half lock horns at the Madejski Stadium in arguably the Exiles’ most important fixture of the season – the St Patrick’s Party.

Irish’s seven biggest home attendance figures have all been set at St Patrick's Party games and Furno insists having 20,000 rowdy Exiles fans against them will only spur his side on in their search for their first win in six Aviva Premiership Rugby matches.

“It will be a tough game against London Irish,” he said. “They are a good side who are in a similar position to us at the moment, so both teams need to put in a good performance.

“It is important that we get the win but obviously we play them away, so it will be a tough game. It is one we are looking forward to though.

“The St Patrick’s Party will create a great atmosphere and I think we should get the best out of it.

“It will give us more motivation to pick up the victory in front of a good crowd, but we know how dangerous London Irish are as a team.”

Newcastle have already won at Madejski Stadium this season, 31-13 in an LV= Cup pool game last month, but have won just once at the venue in Aviva Premiership Rugby since 2006.

Meanwhile London Irish centre Eamonn Sheridan is hoping his side can use the clash to build up some steam heading into a crunch European quarter-final the following week.

The Exiles have won just two games at Madejski Stadium in Aviva Premiership Rugby this season, against London Welsh and Exeter Chiefs.

But a third against the Falcons this weekend would see them consolidate their position above the visitors in the table, and Sheridan insists good preparation during the two-week break will see them through.

He said: “We obviously want to finish ahead of them and as high up the Aviva Premiership table as we can, so this is an important game for us and we’re giving it our full attention.

“It’s a good opportunity for us to get some momentum as well going into our European quarter-final.

“Doing as well as we can there has to be a priority for us at the end of the season, which makes getting a win here even more important.

“Newcastle are a very good side and have been in good form in Aviva Premiership Rugby.

“We’ve done our homework on them and they’ve got a strong driving maul and a few guys in the backs that can cause us problems.”

Madejski Stadium, 3pm

Referee: Greg Garner (77th Premiership game).
Assistant Referees: Kelvin Stewart and Andrew Pearce. TMO: Stuart Terheege
 
The London Irish St Patrick's Party takes place on Saturday 28th March at Madejski Stadium. The day starts at 11am with fun for all the family, followed by London Irish vs. Newcastle Falcons in the Aviva Premiership. For tickets call 0118 968 1016 or visit www.London-irish.com

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