DCSIMG

Edinburgh’s Alan Solomons: Work still to be done

Edinburgh head coach Alan Solomons, left, with Greig Laidlaw at full-time. Picture: SNS

Edinburgh head coach Alan Solomons, left, with Greig Laidlaw at full-time. Picture: SNS

Edinburgh head coach Alan Solomons believes his side is still some way off being a competitive unit, despite masterminding them to a shock Heineken Cup win over Munster.

The Gunners boss watched his side survive a first-half battering from the Irishmen at Murrayfield yet still lead at the break before snatching a 29-23 victory with Tim Visser’s late try.

Winning form was not a luxury the capital club carried with them as they kicked off against the two-time European champions at home.

Solomons - who only took ever a month before the season started - has watched his men since sink to the depths of the RaboDirect Pro12 table with win just one win from five games.

But 19 points from skipper Greig Laidlaw kept them competitive as they made the most of their meagre opportunities to shock Rob Penney’s team.

However, Solomons said: “We know we have got a long way to go. We are under no illusions on that.

“But to me, it is important that we keep improving week by week. It was great for the guys that they got that result. It was a real boost to their confidence.

“Of course that will help them take their next step up. But what we have been saying is that we need to be performance focused - not result-focused.

“If we get our performances right, and we have been so close, we will be okay.

“When we go through the match review on a Monday, we have been saying to the guys you are so close you won’t believe it.

“I’m a massive believer that the difference between success and failure is the finest line in the world. If you persevere, you will cross that line. We are a determined lot and we are most certainly going to persevere.”

Matt Scott had given the home side the lead just six minutes in but tries from Casey Laulala and Mike Sherry handed the advantage to Munster.

Laidlaw was his ever reliable self with the boot and four penalties before the break had Edinburgh ahead again, only for opposition kicker Ian Keatley to strike twice himself after the interval as the Irishmen edged back in front.

But with 10 minutes left and Munster growing increasingly confident, Visser sprinted down the left-hand wing to to grab the try which set up an unlikely victory, sealed with two more successful kicks from captain Laidlaw.

The Scotland scrum-half did hit the crossbar in the final stages but the did not prevent him being named man of the match as he also took himself beyond 500 points for Edinburgh.

Solomons added: “I don’t want to take anything away from anyone in the team because I felt everybody played well. But I thought Greig led the side really, really well. He has a very good temperament and showed that with his kicking to the posts.”

Munster had touched down in the Scottish capital fresh from their impressive 19-15 win over Leinster last week but there was little sign of their first-half dominance after the break, leaving Penney to question his team’s attitude.

He said: “Edinburgh are a good side and deserved their win. We are ruing some poor mental preparation because you don’t change from one week to the next like that physically in any way. Out mental application was nowhere near what it needed to be.

“I can’t take anything away from Edinburgh at all. They nullified our threat, defended well and took their opportunities.

“Laidlaw kicked beautifully and the proof is in the pudding. If you leave after 80 minutes and you are behind on the scoreboard then you don’t deserve to win.

“We weren’t good at all but that’s not taking anything away from Edinburgh. We were not allowed to be good.”

 

Comments

 
 

Back to the top of the page

 

X scottish independence image

Keep up-to-date with all the latest Referendum news