For both teams it’s last-chance saloon
who’ve played international rugby against France over there, so we know the psyche and mentality that it takes to perform over there.
“It’s an experienced group of players we have. We’re more determined than ever to turn it around this weekend.”
The Warriors will then play their return match against La Rochelle on Saturday, December 14, before facing their traditional festive double-header against arch-rivals Edinburgh at Scotstoun on the 21st and Murrayfield on the 28th.
Glasgow have struggled in these inter-city derbies in recent times, winning the 1872 Cup [awarded to the team with the best aggregate score over the series] only once in the past five years, and Dalziel says the side know they will have to buck that trend this season.
“The next four weeks will be huge,” he said. “We will know a lot more about ourselves and what we need to do at the end of that.
“At this time of the year, Glasgow are usually up at the top of the league and players have maybe been complacent in games around Christmas. That complacency won’t be there now as it’s a different picture for us.
“The season goes on until June and we want to be in there come the play-offs. To do that we have to be in the top three but we’re not at the moment. We need a good spell of games.
“It’s pretty full-on at the moment. We’re in a spell of the season where the big games are coming thick and fast.
“As players and coaches, there was a bit of soul-searching after the game last weekend. You look at some of the stats and think, ‘How have we actually lost that game?’.
“We did a lot of good things and, individually, there were some really big performances in terms of tackles and carries, so the endeavour is there.
“We just need to hit it this weekend with the clarity of where our shortfalls are, and I think we’ve nailed that. We’ll look to improve.”
A particular concern is that, while the Warriors have shown they are capable of starting games well, they are not quite so good at keeping their foot on the accelerator as the match progresses.
“We are starting games very well and we are seeing the freeflowing rugby we are known for, but opposition teams are always going to have periods in the game. If that’s going to be around that middle period, then we need to look at how we manage that better,” said Dalziel.
“The buzz is still very much there among the boys. We know it’s going to come, but it needs to come quite quickly.”