Richards reacts to Leicester loss

Sunday 02 January 2022 Written by: Adam

Trailing 17-0 at half-time and conceding a further two tries after the break, the director of rugby said: “From our side there are lessons to learn – notably about how to play the game and where to play it.

“As soon as it started to rain we said ‘let’s just put the ball down there, turn them round and make them play’, but it didn’t happen.

“It was one-way traffic on the scoreboard, and even though the possession stats for the first half had us somewhere around 70%, it was possession in the wrong areas, which isn’t what you want.”

A Leicester great during his playing days, Richards took time to credit the unbeaten league leaders, saying: “As soon as it started raining in the first minute of the game I thought ‘here we go’, because in Ben Youngs and George Ford they’ve got the best controlling half-backs in the league.

“To be fair to Louis Schreuder on our side I thought he was outstanding with his exits today, but from a kick-chase point of view they had opportunities all day long to put us under pressure.

“We didn’t capitalise on our moments in the game, and that was the difference.

“Leicester have done really well this season, though, and fair play to them.

“They don’t play in their own half, and everything they do is about putting you under pressure.

“It’s a typically Eddie Jones, Brendan Venter and South African style of rugby, and it’s really successful if you’ve got quality outside.

“Whether they go on to win the league or the Champions Cup, we’ll have to wait and see, but they’re a good young side and they have a very effective brand of rugby which works for them.

“It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but if they keep on winning I can’t imagine they or their fans will be too bothered about that.”

Newcastle Falcons are next in action on Saturday when Northampton Saints visit Kingston Park Stadium.

[**Click here**][1] for tickets for the 3pm Gallagher Premiership kick-off, which is not being shown live on TV in the UK.