With rugby finally returning to our lives on a proper competitive basis, it also signals the return of the opposition view. This week we welcome back Edinburgh fan @TheBlack_n_Red, who offers his thoughts on how the Scottish side did last season, the new head coach, and what tonight’s game holds.
Looking back, how did 2016/17 go for Edinburgh?
Pretty standard really. Started off season with high hopes. That went out the window pretty quick!
Flattered to deceive, played great for short periods of time and awful for lots – Beat Quins then lose to Zebre.
Had the excitement of the move to Myreside but that petered out pretty quickly, argument was only what stunk more – the performances on the pitch or the portaloos off it!
And then Edinburgh being Edinburgh we go to Glasgow last game of season and win for the first time in forever to help start building up the hopes again over the summer!
Richard Cockerill has come in over the summer, what are your thoughts on his appointment?
Fabulous! Someone new to Scotland and Edinburgh, and seemingly with the character to not accept that “this is just how things are done”. I don’t expect him to turn us into worldbeaters overnight but I do expect a team to lack for nothing in terms of endeavour. Think Pro14 needs characters on and off the pitch and he certainly seems to be one. Bet the match officials can’t wait!
Are you happy with your summer recruitment?
More happy with the lack of it to be honest, too often we seem to be bringing half a squad in. Needed strengthening in centres for far too long and in Fruean and Bennett I see two quality (if currently injured) acquisitions.
Great to see more of the u20s graduating and what I’ve seen of ex Welsh 7s player Jason Harries so far is very encouraging.
Where would you say the strengths and weaknesses lie within your squad?
Strength has to be the forwards but we’re scrabbling around for props at the moment so I’ll say locks and back row. Hopefully the new regime can really make it competitive there to keep everyone on their game and build a real gnarly bunch that are horrid to play against – remind you of anyone?
Lack of any sort of backplay (or attacking play at all) would be our weakness last season, just couldn’t see what they were trying to do. Think the players are more than good enough, it was just how they worked together that was issue. Hoping for big improvements here and not just with the aforementioned new centres!
Who is your Edinburgh player to watch this season?
Tough one that. Will call out Jamie Ritchie in the back row. Player of the season last year and see no reason why that can’t be repeated. Such a competitive area in the squad, players will have to be on top of their games to get in and stay in the team.
Maybe not this year but Darcy Graham is one to keep an eye out for also, has been amazing at age levels and certainly looks keen to get the ball in pre-season.
What would a successful 2017/18 season look like for you?
Not learning from previous experience I’m going to say qualifying for Champions Cup, or at very least making it to 4th in the Conference. Looking at the Conference we have got Scarlets, Leinster and Ulster then Dragons, Treviso and Kings. We can talk all about improvements and performance but I would be disappointed if we can’t finish at least midtable there.
What is your score prediction for our game?
Going to let head rule heart here, us to get a losing BP in a 25-21 defeat.
Thanks to @TheBlack_n_Red for taking the time to offer his insight into tonight’s opponents, and let’s hope his prediction is accurate!