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We’ll be ready for Wasps’ backline threat, says Newcastle Falcons’ Jon Welsh

We’ll be ready for Wasps’ backline threat, says Newcastle Falcons’ Jon Welsh

Newcastle Falcons prop Jon Welsh insists the team will be ready for Wasps’ electric backline when they play the second of a run of three straight fixtures against high-flying opposition.

Newcastle are ninth in Aviva Premiership Rugby, having recorded several impressive wins this season and have shown they can mix it with the bigger teams in the division.

Falcons have dug out impressive victories over Northampton Saints, Harlequins and Gloucester Rugby, and Welsh is hoping the momentum and confidence generated by those wins can translate into points.

However, Falcons’ fixtures do not get any easier, following up leaders and defending champions Saracenswith home clashes against Wasps and then Bath Rugby (January 6) in the next few days.

“Every team is different,” Welsh said. “Wasps are a quality side and have a bit of flair.

“Their backs were very impressive in the [40-26] win over Bath – they have a pretty electric backline.

“We believe we can win both games and it’s about applying our plans. Hopefully we’ll come away with the points.

“We’re building as a club, and we’re working on what we need to address to get better and get up there to start competing with these teams.

“Good wins build confidence in the club, and among supporters as well. I think if we can take that each game each week, it’s only going to be good for us.

“It’s such a huge difference when you’re playing with confidence and when you’re not. To get wins against teams like Harlequins, Gloucester and Northampton, these are big games and big teams, so for us to get those wins is great.”

Newcastle were on the end of a 21-6 reverse to leaders Saracens on Christmas Eve.

Despite staying in the game for much of the match, Falcons ultimately fell short after tries by Marcelo Bosch, and Chris Ashton, on his return from suspension, sealed the win for the hosts.

“We talked about coming up against the big teams,” Welsh said. “It’s going to take an extra one or two per cent to get the better of them.

“On the day, Saracens were just a bit too good for us. But we had a good crack at them, we tore into them at the start of the game, and we took the set-piece away from them that they pride themselves on.”

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