Sale Sharks vs Newcastle Falcons
Competition: Aviva Premiership Rugby
Date: 10 February 2017
Kick-off: 21:15 CET
While Sale and Newcastle may be right next to each other, near the bottom of the log, they are two teams in very different circumstances. There is a big gap between the two and their is an air of hope at Newcastle while Sale seemed doomed to scrapping it out near the foot of the log with no hope for another season.
Sale are in 10th, and although they do have a six point gap over Warriors who are below them, that gap has been ever shrinking and putting pressure on the Sharks. They have only one win more than the bottom placed Bristol so while the bottom two teams have been getting all the heat for not performing, it is actually Sale who should be joining them as they have been almost as poor, just staying afloat thanks to a few bonus points. The issue is that Sale have also not provided any signs of good play, they have looked like a team going through the motions, which are usually losing motions, with no verve or vigour.
It is Newcastle that many have seen to be doing good things, but are still waiting for the luck to turn their way. Their position in ninth is a bit deceiving too as they have 29 points, but a bonus point win over Sale could send them up as high as fifth if everything goes their way, and a bonus point win is very possible. The Falcons have won six and lost seven which is an alright performance over the averages in the competition, but recently they have also won some pretty impressive games like Bath, Harlequins and Northampton Saints – they also came agonizingly close to beating Wasps, falling just four points short.
Sale Sharks vs Newcastle Falcons: Head-to-Head Stats
Sale do not even have the historical advantage in this fixture as in the 37 games that have taken place at this level, Newcastle have won 20 and Sale only 14. There have also been three draws.
Sale Sharks vs Newcastle Falcons: Prediction
Even with the teams being neck and neck on the log, in reality there is a rather large gulf between 10th and ninth. Newcastle will hope to carry their form all the way to Sale and beat them with a bonus point as that would rocket them up the log, even if it is just for a brief period. But more than that, Sale are not a team that the Falcons should be losing to, in fact they should be using this game to push themselves to keep improving their play.
Sale Sharks vs Newcastle Falcons: Tips
There is no reason why Falcons should not get a bonus point out of this game, Sale do not have the worst defence, but Falcons will be determined.