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Room For Improvement

16th December 2009 By Munster Rugby

Room For Improvement

There will be plenty of factors to contend with this weekend in the South of France and Tony McGahan and Paul O’Connell are fully aware of the tough challenge they face this Sunday when they take on Perpignan in Stade Aime Giral, ko 4pm (3pm Irish time).

Paul O’Connell commenting on last Friday’s win, “I think we are happy and disappointed with last week’s game, we played with a lot of intensity and created a lot of opportunities, but at times we’re not getting in to the right positions to take advantage of them. We just need a bit more accuracy to go along with the intensity we’re playing at.”

“We just can’t concede three tries in a competition like this, and we certainly can’t let that happen again this weekend.”

With Tony McGahan in agreement, the Munster coach looked at two areas in particular that need to be improved “We need to work on our execution of play and we need to work harder to re-align ourselves in order to take our opportunities. We have to look to finish off our attack play, and we certainly could have taken a few more opportunities the last night.”

“Three tries down left us chasing it at the end of the game and we have to look at the lack of reaction that led to those tries in the first place.”

O’Connell talking about the physical battle up front, “I thought the scrums for us were excellent and we upset them very well. When playing any French side the scrum is the first thing we touch on and the front-row deserve credit for their performance last week.”

Wian Du Preez has been really good since he came over, he had to learn a whole new lineout system, and he’s worked really hard in getting to know how we play.” McGahan also pleased with the latest front-row addition added “I thought he worked extremely hard around the field and has fitted in very well.”

Paul wasn’t involved in Munster’s last outing to Stade Aime Giral in 2003 but knows “It will be a tough place to play, they’ve an incredible home record there and it’s one of the few places Munster have been badly beaten in the Heineken Cup in recent years.”

“Their record at home speaks for itself, and it will be a lot to do with them playing for pride in front of their home crowd and getting their supporters behind them, just like us in Thomond Park. But you look forward to these games and the Heineken Cup, going to France playing such teams and playing in stadiums we don’t play in often.” 



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