Jim Mallinder calls for Northampton fans to inspire side to victory over Gloucester
Last Updated: February 9, 2013 11:17am
Jim Mallinder: Seeking support from Saints fans against Gloucester
Jim Mallinder has urged Northampton supporters to inspire their side to victory over Gloucester on Saturday.
Both teams are on the periphery of the top four in the Aviva Premiership, with Saints in fifth and Gloucester one point behind them.
London Wasps sit fourth but they travel to defending champions Harlequins on Saturday night, meaning the victors at Franklin's Gardens could find themselves inside the play-off spots.
Both sides' league form has been patchy of late. Saints have won three of their last six, while Gloucester head to the east midlands on the back of consecutive defeats.
But Mallinder hopes his side, boosted by the inclusions of George Pisi, Soane Tonga'uiha, Phil Dowson, Stephen Myler and Lee Dickson, can keep themselves firmly in the play-off mix, with the aid of a vociferous home crowd.
"We're well placed in the league table and close to the top four, and with nine games left there is everything to play for," said Saints director of rugby Mallinder.
"We need the players to be ready to perform from the first whistle, and it will be fantastic if the fans can create an inspiring atmosphere in the stands.
"Although we played Gloucester a fortnight ago this will be a different game. Both teams will have quite a few changes from that day, and there is always an edge when league points are up for grabs.
"It's going to be a tough contest and as with every week we're going to have to be at our best."