What Now For Our Season?

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CitizenSmiff
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What Now For Our Season?

Post by CitizenSmiff » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:21 am

With relegation looking less of an issue now I'm interested, how do we see our prospects for the rest of the season? Without the fear of the drop and with our form improving could we possibly sneak into Europe, or should we prioritise the Challenge Cup and the chance to win silverware for the first time in a while? A win against Bath and I feel like we could really kick on.

RichieB
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by RichieB » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:25 am

If Tigers don't face relegation this season, the one thing it gives us is more time. It makes the gradual improvement process more credibility.

Mark62
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Mark62 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:34 am

I wouldn’t change anything. There seems to be a plan in place re signings , young player development and regaining that winning mindset.
If Saracens are relegated I would almost be tempted to ignore the league table. I don’t see the European Cup as a priority as we are not in a position to seriously compete, and feel being in the challenge cup has had many positives than negatives.

Bunchy
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Bunchy » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:45 am

its been proven that currently, no English side can compete in Europe without cheating the cap. Exeter have a chance to progress this year, but I suspect few imagine they can win (hope I am wrong)

The one thing I would say is we should target the top tier competition because that's what the players want and it helps us attract top talent too
Less is more....

Mark62
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Mark62 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:50 am

Bunchy wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:45 am
its been proven that currently, no English side can compete in Europe without cheating the cap. Exeter have a chance to progress this year, but I suspect few imagine they can win (hope I am wrong)

The one thing I would say is we should target the top tier competition because that's what the players want and it helps us attract top talent too
I’m not sure it does, certainly from the Southern Hemisphere where they watch very little European rugby and have little knowledge of the structure.
I think a number of us assume that we because we follow and enjoy the super rugby competition, the same is true in reverse, but it became clear during the World Cup that isn’t the case

OakhamTiger32
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by OakhamTiger32 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 12:00 pm

I think the plan has to be getting back to being serious contenders at the top of the table and competing in the Champions Cup on a regular basis. These 2 achievements used to be routine business for the Club and anything less than a top 4 finish was seen as a disastrous season. Clearly, this is not an easy task and will undoubtedly take a few seasons to achieve but there have been some very promising signs recently and I don't think we are too far away from turning the corner - maybe the Bath game as you say Mark62.

Recruitment over the last few seasons has been extremely poor and is partly to blame for our current plight. Some of the recent signings (Taufua, Lavanini et al.) have been very impressive and are exactly what we needed. With the likes of Lam or Nadolo being linked and Ford, Genge and Manu all having signed on for a few more seasons things are looking very promising for next year. Assuming that we avoid the drop, I am confident that Tigers will have a much more competitive season next year.

They have certainly come under a lot of fire over their time at the helm but GM and his coaching team seem to be starting to gather momentum and the addition of Borthwick post 6N will only galvanise this team further.

Sarries appear to be in pole position to go down, I guess time will tell and we will wait to see how today's meeting pans out. Sarries aside, Irish appear to be slipping down the table and that is where my 50p would be, if I were a betting man! That being said they will potentially fare better than us during the 6N as their squad will be largely untouched so I guess once again, time will tell.

Beat Bath and I think we will finally begin to believe again; lose and with a few tough fixtures ahead away to Sale, Sarries and Exeter then we could struggle.

As for the European Challenge Cup; winning silverware, regardless of the competition is great for any club. Assuming we stay up it would also guarantee us Champions Cup rugby next season so it's not to be sniffed at. On our day we are more than capable of beating all of the teams in the competition and especially as the QF games will be post 6N (03-05 Apr 20).

Priority has to be the GP but considering the next Challenge Cup game isn't until Apr we have some time between now and then and we should potentially know who is going down and where we sit in the table. If Sarries are automatically relegated then I think we should have a crack at the Challenge Cup as we have nothing to lose.
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Tiglon
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Tiglon » Fri Jan 17, 2020 12:19 pm

Agree that the team has improved over recent matches and I feel confident, Sarries or not, that we can avoid relegation. The 6N period might be the decider, if we can equal the results of Bristol, Worcester, Wasps and Irish then I think we'll be fine as we should be able to do better than them once all the players are back.

The decision as to whether we prioritise the Premiership or Challenge Cup has to be made on an ongoing basis. Until league safety is secured, we have to put out the best team possible for all league matches - no complacency. However, if we get to a situation where winning a game means we finish 8th instead of 9th, for example, and are still in Europe, then the priority moves to the latter.

I strongly believe that being in the top tier of European competition is a huge draw for players - money is always important, as is lifestyle, but the right kind of players want to be competing at the highest level. The idea of a person committing 2 or 3 years of his life to a job and moving halfway round the world for it without properly researching it (i.e. looking at the competitions the club will be playing in etc) is frankly ridiculous - particularly for a professional sportsperson who is more often than not motivated by achievement. I can fully believe that the majority of Southern Hemisphere rugby fans and players don't watch the European rugby, but it's a bit of a stretch to claim that Southern Hemisphere players (or their agents) don't do any research before signing a contract.

fleabane
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by fleabane » Fri Jan 17, 2020 12:36 pm

Bunchy wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:45 am
its been proven that currently, no English side can compete in Europe without cheating the cap. Exeter have a chance to progress this year, but I suspect few imagine they can win (hope I am wrong)
It’s rather more complicated than that! There is no « proof », and I have seen no proper correlation between salary cap and competing in Europe. Yes, having the right players and coaches is essential, but Injuries, sequence and timing of matches, other teams problems, competitions targeted, disciplinary sanctions, the weather and luck all play a part. Managing these is the secret to success. There are a number of « superstar » teams that have failed in one or both competitions, particularly in France!
Valhalla I am coming!

Mark62
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Mark62 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:31 pm

I totally get Tiglons point re players signing because of the top tier European competition. I was just repeating what I’ve been told, and also looking at signings from the Southern Hemisphere it would appear that as many quality players have signed for premiership bottom 6 as top 6.
Certainly Liebenberg Taufua and Lavanini must have had their fair share of suitors and chose Tigers.
All of this is in my opinion of course

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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Chobbsy » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:04 pm

Bunchy wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:45 am
its been proven that currently, no English side can compete in Europe without cheating the cap. Exeter have a chance to progress this year, but I suspect few imagine they can win (hope I am wrong)

The one thing I would say is we should target the top tier competition because that's what the players want and it helps us attract top talent too
I cannot see anyway that Sarries will be relegated, in my humble opinion no way will Sarries be let to drop
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ABClub
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by ABClub » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:41 pm

The most important opportunity it could give us is building depth by giving the youngsters game time in strong line-ups and higher pressure games.

6.Lewis 7.Reffell 8.Taufau
11.May 14.Veainu 15.Steward
1.Genge 2.Kerr 3.Cole
1.Genge 2.Youngs 3.Heyes
4.Lavanini 5.Jordan
9.Simmons 10.Ford
9.Youngs 10.Costelow

Start building squad depth through the academy again.

It would be interesting to see what any of Taylor Gough, Thom Smith and Henri Lavin have got at senior level. They are doing well at Championship level and for the A-team. If they are capable of stepping up then that will be a more cost effective way of adding depth than signing someone from elsewhere.

JP14
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by JP14 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:51 pm

Lavin is out for the rest of the season I believe or at least for an extended period.
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by TigerCam » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:57 pm

Chobbsy wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:04 pm
Bunchy wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 11:45 am
its been proven that currently, no English side can compete in Europe without cheating the cap. Exeter have a chance to progress this year, but I suspect few imagine they can win (hope I am wrong)

The one thing I would say is we should target the top tier competition because that's what the players want and it helps us attract top talent too
I cannot see anyway that Sarries will be relegated, in my humble opinion no way will Sarries be let to drop
From what I read in the Times today that the Sarries will get the drop immediately having run out of time to balance the books by shedding players, due they say to other clubs not having the financial capacity to take said players, then if the Tigers sit back and draw breath then there is no change to the WR status quo. Regardless of what happens to other clubs, the Tigers need to get on fast to make the changes that should have happened years ago. Ring-fencing may happen in 2020, but if not and there are no changes at WR then the drop may well come in 2021.

ABClub
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by ABClub » Fri Jan 17, 2020 6:13 pm

JP14 wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:51 pm
Lavin is out for the rest of the season I believe or at least for an extended period.
What's Henri done do you know? I hadn't heard anything on that. A shame as he looked good in the 7s and has been growing into senior rugby with Yorkshire.

Robespierre
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Re: What Now For Our Season?

Post by Robespierre » Fri Jan 17, 2020 6:34 pm

My answer to the title of the thread is survival in the Premiership, and not just being one above Saracens but climbing up the table a bit. Top 6 is frankly pie in the sky in my opinion. Once Borthers gets his feet under the table then serious goals can be established.
Last edited by Robespierre on Sat Jan 18, 2020 1:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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