Morale remains high in Edinburgh’s camp despite the narrow loss to La Rochelle last week and the capital club can turn it around against Sale Sharks, believes Scotland prop Rory Sutherland.
Sutherland believes Edinburgh were close to beating “the form team in France” last weekend in the Heineken Champions Cup and that only a couple of tweaks are needed for the club to be competing with the best teams in Europe.
“I think the atmosphere’s really good (in the squad) and you have to take positives from that game,” said Sutherland. “They’re the form team in France at the minute and we did a lot of good things in the game, we run them really close.
“It’s just a little bit of ill-discipline that let us down. I think we’ve got to take confidence out of that game.
“We’ve reviewed it and looked at the negatives but now it’s about looking at the positives and looking at next week, but the feeling in camp’s really good.”
‘A massive game’
Edinburgh will “flush that result” and also park the Scotland-England element, says Sutherland.
“This is a massive game, we’re going down there to win and put our best game on the park,” he continued. “We always look forward to playing English teams but like any game you got to try and park the emotional side of it and focus on the game.
“The main thing for me and the team this week is to focus on Europe and try to get that back on track.”
Sutherland is one of the few who has had a brilliant 2020, coming into the Scotland team at the start of the 6 Nations and finishing the first part of the tournament as the cornerstone of a newly solid scrum and quoted as a British and Irish Lions candidate.
That came after a long recovery from a groin muscle injury that threatened his career, and he admitted he got a scare during the Autumn Nations Cup game against Italy in October.
“I went over on my ankle in the scrum, I was lying there trying to get my ankle stapped to get back on and thinking `Oh no, it’s happening again,’” he admitted.
“But we had it scanned on the Monday afterwards and it was the best possible outcome. I’ve got the guys at Scotland and the doctors to thank for that, they turned me round really quick and I was able to be ready for the Ireland game.”
‘It’s not been a normal season’
He doesn’t feel that the fixture congestion of the months after rugby’s restart are taking their toll, and determined to get back out as quickly as possible again.
“It’s not been a normal season, at all,” he said. “Every club’s had to face that challenge, and I feel like that we’ve handled it really well.
“As players we’ve just got to deal with it and we’ve got the strength in depth at Edinburgh now to be able to deal with the congested season.
“We’ve got guys that can step in if guys need a rest, if we feel that we do have too many games, but personally no, I feel like the season’s going well.
“If we go down (to Sale) and win at the weekend it’s a whole new ball game, it looks completely different. The feeling’s good in camp and the boys are feeling confident, so we’re looking for that win.”