1872 Cup: Warriors blow away Edinburgh to claim silverware and five URC league points

Powerful second half performance extends visitors' winning streak to five games

Man-of-the-Match Sione Tuipulotu celebrates Glasgow Warriors' win over Edinburgh. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Man-of-the-Match Sione Tuipulotu celebrates Glasgow Warriors' win over Edinburgh. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

Edinburgh 25

Glasgow Warriors 32

DAVID BARNES @ Murrayfield

A THUNDEROUS second-half turnaround saw rampant Glasgow Warriors wipe out an eight-point deficit and charge into a totally dominant 12-point lead with five minutes to go, and although a late try from replacement hooker Paddy Harrison salvaged a losing-bonus point for Edinburgh that clearly provided scant consolation to beaten head coach Mike Blair afterwards.

“They were able to take control of the game and we were hanging in there at the start of the second half,” he reflected afterwards. “I felt if we got away clean around that Marshall Sykes yellow-card [in the 65th minute] it would have been a bit easier for us, but we didn’t and their chests seemed to come out a bit, and they were playing with a bit of confidence and creating opportunities

“They are a good team. They got a lot more possession in the second half. When had possession in the first half we were able to put pressure on them with our attack and our kicking game, but they were just able to make more of that possession in the second half than we managed.


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“I’m feeling challenged in the job,” he admitted, reflecting on his team’s record of one win from their last six matches in all competitions. “I’m obviously pretty new to it with not a huge amount of experience, but I’m also very clear that we are a good side with good personnel.

“So, I’m challenging myself because I’m clearly not getting the best out of players at the moment whether that’s an individual situation or a team situation. So, I need to look at what I’m doing and find a way out of this.

“I still don’t believe we are far off because we are playing good rugby. We need to start looking more at our belief and psychologically where we are, because we are doing enough good stuff, but we’re having periods where teams are finding it too easy to put points on us.

“We have discussed how you change momentum of a game, through working on you ‘no talent’ battles, or our communication being more challenging of each other in that period, or producing big moments through a big hit or a strong ball-carry, but we weren’t able to find that tonight.”

Meanwhile, for the victors, there was the immediate gratification of getting to lift the 1872 Cup having achieved a 48-35 aggregate win over their great rivals from this festive season’s double-header, and more importantly they have moved four points clear of Edinburgh in the URC table, strengthening their position for play-off and Champions Cup qualification. This was their first away win in this fixture in six years.

“I’m really delighted for the boys,” said Warriors head coach Franco Smith. “We had a plan and they stuck to it, and I thought the second half, the energy the boys brought from the side [as replacements] and the way they reacted to the half-time talk, was fantastic.

“We lacked a little of belief and one or two things said at half-time helped us align again. There was some decisions made in pre-season on how we want to approach the campaign and they [the players] have bought into the philosophy. We think there is [still] a lot to work on but if you have this buzz in the changing room it will help.

“The first half showed that expectation is our enemy,” he added. “There was a lot of expectation around us and I felt that drained our energy so the quicker we get rid of the expectation around our next performance the better it will be. We’ve got the Stormers coming [next Sunday] – they are the champions of this competition – and it is going to be a tough afternoon if we don’t find our feet immediately. With them being the favourites, it will be good.”

 

The biblical winds and rain which had buffeted Edinburgh overnight and into the morning had calmed by kick-off time, and it wasn’t too cold, which was surely the key factor in this match – from the very start – being a much more open and entertaining affair than the first leg at Scotstoun seven days earlier.

Glasgow laid down an early marker when they earned a scrum penalty, and after kicking to the corner they built through the phases, with big carries from the excellent Sione Tuipulotu and Richie Gray, before Kyle Steyn stepped inside three weak Edinburgh tackles to score the opening points.

Tom Jordan nailed the conversion, but Edinburgh bounced back when Sam Skinner charged-down Ali Price’s clearance and Jamie Ritchie barged over to set up an easy Emiliano Boffelli conversion which squared the contest with 11 minutes played.

The hosts grabbed the lead two minutes later when a powerful surge from Viliame Mata took play up to Glasgow’s 22, and Ollie Smith was penalised for entering a ruck from the side, handing Kinghorn three easy points.

Edinburgh came close again on 19 minutes when Duhan van der Merwe burst onto Henry Pyrgos’ inside pass straight off scrum ball, carrying three men over the line, but Sebastian Cancelliere did well to get his body between the ball and the ground.

All the momentum was with the capital outfit now, and a huge scrum near halfway shoved Warriors off their own ball to earn a penalty, before Luke Crosbie grabbed Edinburgh’s second try by off the back of a line-out maul, with Kinghorn adding the tricky conversion from wide on the right.

But Warriors stayed in the battle with a cute play from a line-out which involved winger Steyn as front lifter to centre Stafford McDowall, who patted down to Gray peeling round the front, and Matt Fagerson finished the move, but Edinburgh had the last say of the first half when Kinghorn slotted his second penalty of the evening, after another dominant home scrum.

 

After 10 minutes of cat and mouse at the start of the second half, Warriors stand-off Jordan broke Edinburgh’s defence when he fended Mark Bennett and it took some excellent defence by Emilano Boffelli on his Argentinean countryman Cancelliere to stop a near certain try.

But there was no stopping Glasgow  the next time they attacked, with Gray’s soft hands sending Sione Vailanu on a trademark gallop deep into enemy territory, before feeding Cancelliere to make more good ground up the right touchline, with Jordan finishing off. Jordan converted himself to pull it back to a one-point game with just over 20 minutes to play.

Glasgow were straight back on the offensive, and they snatched the lead with 13 minutes to play with a George Horne penalty after Sykes was yellow carded for an offside bang in front of the posts..

That was Horne’s first major involvement after coming off the bench to replace Ali Price, and it got even better for the scrum-half when he finished off a sweeping attack which featured a clever kick ahead by man-of-the-match Tuipulotu and an excellent pick up and pass inside from Steyn to Jordan, who provided the final pass.

Having shown their flashy side, Glasgow then showed their grunt up front by squeezing out another penalty through an uncompromising line-out drive, which Horne kicked to make it a 12-point lead, before Harrison’s late try meant Edinburgh did at least end up with something from the match.

 

Teams –

Edinburgh: H Paterson; E Boffelli, M Bennett, J Lang (C Hutchison 71), D van der Merwe  (C Savala 65); B Kinghorn, H Pyrgos (C Shiel 69); B Venter (P Schoeman 50), T Cruse (P Harrison 61), W Nel (A Williams 69), S Skinner (M Sykes 60), G Gilchrist, J Ritchie, L Crosbie, V Mata ( C Boyle 57).

Glasgow Warriors: O Smith: S Cancelliere, S Tuipulotu, S McDowall, K Steyn; T Jordan (D Miotti 76), A Price (G Horne 60); J Bhatti (N McBeth, 60), F Brown (G Turner 52), L Sordoni (S Berghan 11-21, 52), S Manjezi (L Bean 40), R Gray (J du Preez 60), M Fagerson, S Vailanu (C Neild 76), J Dempsey.

Referee: Sam Grove-White

 

Scorers –

Edinburgh: Tries: Ritchie Crosbie, Harrison; Con: Boffelli 2; Pen: Boffelli 2.

Glasgow Warriors: Tries: Steyn, Fagerson, Cancelliere, Horne; Con: Jordan 2, Horne; Pen: Horne 2.

Scoring sequence (Edinburgh first): 0-5; 0-7; 5-7; 7-7; 10-7; 15-7; 17-7; 17-12; 20-12 (h-t) 20-17; 20-19; 20-22; 20-27; 2o-29; 20-32; 25-32.

 

Yellow cards –

Edinburgh: Sykes (65mins)


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About David Barnes 3179 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

42 Comments

  1. Tom Jordan looks a really useful prospect. With Ross Thompson not getting any game time due to a crocked ankle, Hastings with a dodgy knee and Kinghorn not really firing in this game you’d think there is a good chance of making the 6 nations squad. He’s played quite a bit at 12 as well so maybe long term he could be an alternative to Redpath as second playmaker at inside centre.

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    • Big Al, I agree re Jordans abilities but it appears ( I think) he is not qualified for 2 years.
      I admit to not fully understanding but it as far as I can ascertain he’s qualified as a resident but not as a scottish qualified rugby player.
      I watched a confident scottish qualified 10 win the game tonight for munster

      • he is qualified in terms of the URC – 3 years residency. But not qualified under WR regs for Scotland, which is 5 years now

      • I thought he was qualified but stand corrected. Maybe one for the future.

        As for Ben Healy at Munster he’s an interesting prospect if the SRU can secure his services. Scored the winning try today coming on at 12 in the 53minute.

    • I would stop right there Jordan’s shows all the right attitudes off a good stand off with a mental & physical approach to the modern game without trying creat a new position to stifle a successful career ahead.

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  2. Upon reflection my opinion(s) to sort Edinburgh.
    VdW to 10, BK is easy for the better teams to play against/stop. BK is capable of brilliance but his lack of an all round stand off game really hamstrings Edinburgh.
    Hope that Cammy Hutchison can have a run in the team, his ability to straighten this line from 12 is very useful, looks a distinct lack of beef in the Edinburgh backline.
    Boyle and Muncaster to play a bigger role. Mata looks tired (someone said above the whole squad looks tired) and certainly these 2 boys would add some dynamism.

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    • I’m going to watch the Ulster v Munster game today, John Cooney……. he is currently probably the best all round SQ 9.

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    • They have had a tough run of physical opposition and the lack of depth has shown (although Injuries certainly have not helped).

      I’ve noticed Edinburgh predominantly use theirs wings for ball carrying, rather than centres. With both Graham and Goosen out we have lacked an a big aspect of our attacking play, Boffelli has been close to world-class the past year but he is not a renowned ball carrier and is better at 15 in my mind.

      For some reason Duhan seems to have struggled as well, there just appears to be too much inward running, and a slight hesitation when he gets close to contact when carrying it straight, needs to find his confidence there again (could also be a lot of Glasgow players have learned how to tackle him from Scotland set-up.

      Thought Harry Patterson looked more assured this week at least, looks promising but needs game time similar to Oli Smiths progression.

  3. Very disappointing from an Edinburgh perspective. They should have had the game won by half time but credit to Glasgow for a couple of brilliant tries in the 2nd half. Glasgow really upped the tempo in the 2nd half and managed to get the ball wide which Edinburgh rarely achieved and couldn’t live with.

    I had said earlier in the season that Edinburgh had much greater depth particularly in the forwards and that they should be contending for a top 4 finish. How wrong was I – on paper they do still have good depth in a lot of positions – 5 good locks, strong back row and hooker depth with an all international front row most weeks although tight head is not so great. However they are not playing collectively. The backline when at full strength is all international and on their day they play exciting rugby but they have fallen off a cliff recently and its hard to put your finger on it. Their defence has looked flimsy and the backs lack fluency.

    One area thats not helping is the form of Van der Merve. He’s a great physical specimen but he’s got tunnel vision and too often looks for contact rather than pass to someone in space. Early in the 2nd half he got the ball out wide cut back in and proceeded to bash into a few defenders when he had several options to offload to support players – should have led to a try. . Compare him with Cancelliere who is a silky runner and creates space for others. VdM also should have scored when he got over the line in the 1st half.

    Having just watched the SA derbies Edinburgh are now outside the top 8 and they will have to really improve to make the play offs. Both Muncaster and Boyle looked really good last year as up and coming talent but haven’t got so much game time yet this season so perhaps its time to try the young ones as the old guard arent doing too well.

  4. “I’m obviously pretty new to it with not a huge amount of experience” – out of the mouths of babes, sucklings and Blairs. It was a huge mistake to get rid of Cockers who had a mean edge and was up for derby games.He always said that Edinburgh was a work in progress and recruited for the next stage but was ousted before he could try to develop the style of play (like at Leicester) having hardened the players. Some of the poor wee petals in the squad couldn’t take it and he was moved on. A Cockerill/Blair combo would have been a better bet. Townsend’s tinkering with how players are used does not help Blairs cause, nor does Blair’s selections at times.

    The sad thing is the number of non-Scottish players in the teams, like a Barbarians team.

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  5. Interesting game yesterday. At the end of the day Glasgow wanted it more than Edinburgh. For me the main changes in Glasgow this year are they collectively have their heads in a better place, are better organised, seem to be a bit fitter and more of the players are playing closer to their potential. No more dropping off the pace in the last 20 minutes. No doubt some interesting selection decisions coming up for Townsend as some of the Edinburgh stalwarts arent hitting top form in the lead up to the 6 nations.

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  6. Agree with most of what has already been said, but Edinburgh made 4 bad mistakes at the start of the econd half, dropped passes etc, and it just handed the game to Glasgow on a plate, and to be fair, they made the most of it.

    Edinburgh seem to do this a lot. I suspect until they sort this out, they will win few games.

  7. I am a strict neutral who enjoys watching both of our teams thrive, so it was sad to see just how badly Edinburgh faded in the second half – something they also did against Munster and to an extent Saracens. Perhaps there is a stamina issue here, but alarm bells should be ringing loudly whatever. That is to take nothing away from Glasgow, who played with great spirit, brutal determination and real elan going forwards.

    On the plus side young Harry Paterson had some fine moments to justify his inclusion and if he puts on a bit more muscle could develop into a useful player. Harrison’s impressive dart round the blind side added some scarce-deserved credibility to the final score and he is definitely one for the future. It was also good to see a cameo from young Cammy, who surely deserves a long break away from injury.

    On the Glasgow side, ‘Tupo’ is coming on in leaps and bounds and it will be interesting to see if Townsend is tempted to promote his crash-bang-wallop style over Cammy Redpath, who is an entirely different kind of player. Gray the Larger will surely prove both reliable in the line and a constant nuisance to the opposition come the Six Nations, while his involvement and swift hands in that great try also deserves praise. Jordan is at last showing why the coach has stuck with him at ten and I imagine Steyn has done enough to throw his hat into the ring bearing in mind Scotland’s mini-crisis on the wing.

    One final encouraging note – it was great to see such a good turnout. Scottish rugby needs and deserves that kind of support.

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    • Don’t see a problem in playing Redpath at 12 and Tuipolotu at 13 outside of Russell. Bit of a headache at 9 although Townsend doesnt seem to fancy Horne for whatever reason. The other headache in the backs is who will cover for Graham while he recovers, maybe Kinghorn or Steyn?

      Lots more discussion in the forwards as injuries and lack of form will likely shake things up. No doubt Gray the Larger deserves more caps on current form.

      • A few tough calls ahead Al – and hopefully no more injuries. You just know Toony will play Harris at 13, while scrum half is a poser. Both Horne and Vellacott are sharper than Price, while down south White and even Charlie Chapman are available options. But I don’t expect this to change. It’s a shame that Dobie doesn’t get more game time, for it is the only way he will develop his great potential. Wing is an interesting one right now. Of those available Steyn probably has as good a chance as any, but as John says Maitland may be a stop-gap. I would love to put the cat among the pigeons however and give Scots-born Tom Roebuck a shot. A cheeky wee theft that would drive the England supporters mad at Twickenham! Don’t know if he’s up for it mind.

      • I think Harris if fit is inevitable for the England game. However, we’ve no idea which England will turn up under the new coaching regime and what their tactics will be. Need to hope they are still in transition and we catch them cold again in the first game as no doubt Borthwick will pick more on form than Jones favourites.

  8. First things first, Happy New Year to everyone when it comes and thanks to TOL for their excellent efforts throughout the year. I was especially heartened by your coverage of the schools cup competition which is only made possible through incredible sacrifice by many coaches and club officials motivated by nothing other than their love of the game. Nice to see them get some recognition.

    I didn’t get to the game last night due to the travel disruption, so I missed my first Edinburgh home game for several years. To me, this season’s travails are no surprise. We flattered to deceive last season and, ultimately, barely finished above Glasgow who, everyone agreed, had a dreadful season.

    We have a pack who can steamroller some teams but also one which struggles against good teams. I liked the comment elsewhere about our set piece being strong but our forward play in the loose not improving. That means we can bully teams who have a poorer set piece but don’t compete when we are at parity or worse.

    The most obvious manifestation of this is our almost total inability to score from 5 metres out when faced with a decent defence. I really hope a solution can be found to this but it seems to be a Scotland wide problem rather than an Edinburgh specific one.

    Until this is sorted, we have to rely on immaculate game management to compete with better teams consistently. This, I am afraid, is where the BK10 project has been an abject failure for me. He has skills most of us would die for but he appears to have no feel for this critical part of the game. And, when he does decide to kick (which, to be fair, he has been doing a bit more of in the last couple of games) they are misdirected far too often – only one of his in-play kicks last night was effective and that was only due to a very poor misfield by the covering defender (Cancelliere I think).

    With players like Darcy, Duhan, Bofelli and Bennett, we are always going to score tries so I really don’t get why we appear so set on sacrificing game management for another direct attacking threat at 10 – and, being totally honest, it is not a threat that has been very apparent since opposing teams have had a chance to analyse it anyway.

    As I have said elsewhere, I don’t think persisting with this is doing anyone any good – least of all the lad himself given he is still young enough that he should be thinking about his next move. (Honestly, does anyone really believe any other team would sign BK as a 10?)

    He is more limited in terms of sklll set but I would urge Mike Blair to bring Jaco back in at 10 because he complements our outside backs far better and use Kinghorn in the back three where we are struggling for depth at the moment anyway.

    BTW, I do like the look of Savala but I think he is a wee bit away from being a regular starter – his tactical kicking looks as if it needs a bit of work but definitely shows promise.

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  9. Regarding Danny Wilson, as a Glasgow fan, I cannot agree with your post – he was a poor coach. From what I gather, he let some very good home grown Scottish talent go and what he left behind are now obviously being man managed and coached properly. They are now producing some decent results.
    As for Mike Blair, you have to wonder how much actual input he is allowed to have. In my opinion, the gravy train continues with the toxicity and the Old Boys Network that is the SRU, to the detriment of rugby in Scotland.

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    • who did he let go? As opposed to players who left of their own choice?

      Rennie recruited zilch, too busy hawking his CV around. And pissing off half the squad
      Wilson recruited Tuipolotu, Vailanu, Dempsey

      Funny how Wilson gets full accountability yet Blair has little say, eh?

      Been reading too many conspiracy theories on twatter mate

      BTW I made no comment on Wilson as coach. I do resect the opinion of others however. Sam Warburton is on record as saying there were 3 coaches he would have run through a brick wall for. IIRC Gatland and Edwards were 2. Wilson was the 3rd. It didn’t work out at Glasgow, he inherited a shambles. I don not know if he would have succeeded of he had stayed on, but I very much doubt anyone would have succeeded in his situation

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  10. Ona acouple of occasions, I thought Horne was trying a little too hard when he came on, but he settled into a fine game and is much sharper than Price, who’s faded from his best this season. Tuipolotu is in very good form and it’s good to see, but not quite as good to see as the reborn Richie Gray. Whether it was self-motivation or a kick up the backside from someone else, his return to his best is very welcome.
    Skinner had a good game for Edinburgh and they got a shunt on in the scrum, but I think they lacked the vital spark in the backs, not least because Graham and Dean weren’t playing. Kinghorn being ill on the pitch wasn’t a good sign and I couldn’t help but wonder how fit the squad was if he had to play despite being unwell.
    Wouldn’t it be great if both teams could be heading in the same direction at the same time. Edinburgh were resurgent when Blair took over, but have now lost momentum again, whilst Smith’s arrival seems to have rejuvenated some of his top players. Not the finished article by any means, but the evident imrovement in Gray, Tuipolotu and Horne has happened under his watch. As has been mentioned elsewhere, we do need more domestic youngsters coming through into these two pro teams for the health of the game and I hope 2023 stimulates the excitement in kids to make them want to take part.
    Happy New Year to all, when it comes.

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    • Horne did try to much initially, then as you say came on to his game

      But it never fails to amaze me how often we ignore that a new 8 coming on after an hour is there to speed things up and usually succeeds (if he gets decent ball, which Horne did). Quite amazing how often it happens – is s down to coaches always picking the wrong starter; or horses for courses, or game plan, or tiring legs and minds?

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      • I think you’re absolutely right, introducing a spark at 9 can make a big difference, as Horne did. It didn’t seem to work for Edinburgh this time though and perhaps Vellacott would have been a better bet for them. In saying that, I’m not a big fan of Pyrgos, so probably would have started Vellacott, given the choice. Pyrgos has his moments, but kicks too much for my liking.

  11. fun game. If you are a neutral or a Glasgow fan. Not so much if you are an Edin fan.
    Early score apart, it looked like Edin were going to blow Glasgow away, 8 clear at HT and looking powerful

    But once Glasgow decided to play……….wow. Couple of amazing scores and threatened more. Play like that for 80mins and can beat anyone

    As noted by others, Glasgow do not commit much to the breakdown unless its definitely on- they fill the line and trust their defence. Certainly worked last night, but better sides will pick and go at the fringe or through the middle to suck defenders in – I can remember years back Glasgow were suckered the same way. So they need to have ruck guards very alert

    On the coaches, Blair has his work cut out. There were shades of an old Edinburgh last night- players who thought they are better than they are, complacent and don’t realise it until it too late. Blair need to cut a few down to size starting with Richie who is going to be spending a lot of time in the sin bin if he keeps yelling at refs and continuing to handle in the ruck when clearly told hands off. Not many refs will be a soft as last night.
    Smith has a plan and it seems to be working, but there are still some obvious weaknesses and bigger challenges to come, starting next week.

    And a word for Danny Wilson. Didn’t work out got him, but he left some very decent signings for Smith to build on. More than Rennie ever did

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    • Septic
      Agree with you about Ritchie’s antics.
      He still gets a couple of turnovers in most games but he is becoming less prominent in other aspects of play. He is really suffering from not having Watson alongside him.
      If Toonie was to pick on form then Fagerson should start at 6 with Dempsey at 8.
      However, that means not starting his chosen captain and that won’t happen.

      • agree 100% with that Sensiball
        And makes the point about Blair and Townsend having a very firm talk with Richie all the more important,
        I have been a firm advocate of Richie for captain for a couple of years, but he has to worth his place and he can’t be a pen magnet and consistently getting on the wrong side of refs. He is there to lead – by example, by words, by decisions – all the things he has naturally done through his career. Until made captain it seems – I do hope I and the coaches have no been wrong about him and he is to the manner born, but he has to sort himself out, now.
        There is a lot of competition for back row places, no-one should feel secure. Captain or not

      • Townsend should pick his strongest XV , before selecting from that his captain. Ritchie as captain is diminished as a player from the automatic pick of a few seasons ago. Not a fan of his super confrontational approach to referees, while becoming a penalty magnet.

  12. Another good performance from Glasgow, their not committing to breakdowns anyone other than the tackler seemed to have contained Edinburgh in both games. Every time Edinburgh moved the ball the Glasgow defense was set up, ready and able to contain them. There 2nd half performance was turbo charged they seemed to step up a gear at the right time.
    Best game from Tuipulotu yet and fully deserved MOM. Horne also had a great cameo and looks back to his best with a great try.

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  13. Thought Edinburgh looked stronger on paper but Franco Smith and his team have raised the performance of lots of Glasgow players. Bhatti, Brown and Turner all looking very dynamic. Richie Gray is a man transformed. Back row looking formidable. Jordan a real find as he brings physicality with his skill. McDowall is starting to fulfil his promise. Tuipolotou in fine form and as said here, seems a great leader. Back three look composed and threatening. Great to watch. Will be very interesting to see how they front up v Stormers

  14. I said Franco would make Glasgow entertaining but may struggle to get them in a better league position than Danny Wilson. The jury is still out on that but I’m bracing my face for an omelette in 2023.

    Unacceptable for Edinburgh with the lineup they were able to put out. I’ve a lot of time for Mike Blair but Edinburgh are horrifically inconsistent and show signs of entering slumps in form that it takes an age for them to get out of (both in games and week on week).

  15. Great game – swung both ways with that 20mins in the second half when Glasgow seemed to decide that the game was theirs, changed gear, end of game….

    Great to see the Warriors find themselves after their Jekyll and Hyde start to the season, the consistency and performance levels being very evident. Players now adapting to new coach and trusting themselves and their systems. It doesn’t turn us into Leinster/Stormer beaters overnight, but if we can keep performing and play to our best then we can at least compete in those big games – interesting to see how we go against Stormers next weekend.

    Horne on fire when he came on so much more energy than Price at the moment darting and keeping defences thinking, giving Jordan more time….. Struggling to see what Horne and Dobie need to do to regularly start over Price or was that Franco’s game plan on the night to contain Edinburgh then hit them in that 20? The back 5 forwards seemed to quietly suffocate/absorb Edinburgh in the loose last night that they became anonymous for large parts of the game, such that they were left bereft of ideas, which is where we won the mental game on the night.

    I’m first to admit that I wasn’t 100% sure about Franco but he has something going in terms of team ethic, work rate, and competition in the squad to get the players to perform close to their potential – that away win at Zebre a big turning point – a great way to close out ‘22.

    Edinburgh aren’t a bad squad – showing similar traits to Glasgow before we rediscovered ourselves. Blair is a good man – but possibly more of a Stuart Lancaster than an Andy Farrell?? Maybe it’s the blend of the Edinburgh coaching team that isn’t right and they need a “bad cop” to work with Blair?

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    • Edinburgh had the ultimate bad cop but dispensed with his services after he had restored credibility to the team, but was unable to take the team to the next level.
      If Townsend was watching the Possibles v Probables double header he should be pencilling Horne, Tipo, R Gray into the starting XV for the Six Nations opener , if form is critical. Other than Skinner I am not sure if any Edinburgh player advanced their cause. Crosfield had a chance last night but failed.

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  16. Well done Glasgow a team on the up. Edinburgh unfortunately do not have the depth for international commitments , European league and tougher league URC games following introduction of SA teams. Key players injured ,carrying injuries ,returning from injury has seen a significant decline in recent weeks . I have however thought for sometime that the forwards (set piece aside) has not progressed.at all . Attack and defence in forwards lacks intensity creativity in close quarters exchanges . Compare with the best In this area and you see what I mean . Leinster rarely go into contact in ones it’s threes and at pace. How much is down personnel and how much coaching unsure bit of both . We also need to strengthen front row and significantly improve younger players . Anyone who witnessed the pre season game v London Scottish ( a team at bottom of English 2nd division ) will have seen the gap the development players well of pace – it is scary . I still 100% back Mike Blair but he needs to address forwards coaching ASAP . Oh and we should not play players that are clearly not fully recovered eg Knghorne and Duhan last night but that’s a symptom of the lack of depth !

  17. A really honest appraisal of his Edinburgh players from Mike Blair, along with questioning his own performance. No doubt they have a soft underbelly, when opponents have the ascendency Edinburgh have no answer.
    Tom English was correct on the radio, every opponent knows it, they’re soft.
    It’s going to be a really tough second half of the season for Edinburgh, and unless they can sort what’s trapped in between there ears, I’m afraid for them?
    That said, you’ve either got the dog in you or you haven’t, it’s difficult to just magic that hard edge up, if it’s not in you?

    Well done Glasgow, that was well earned, I hope Mr.Townsend was taking note of George Horne, and the oh so slow Ali Price?

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  18. Superb 2nd half and in particular 2 wonderful tries (Jordan and Horne) made Glasgow very worthy winners. Tuipulotu every more looking the real deal at centre and Jordan improving with every game, exerting much more influence than Kinghorn from 10.
    Edinburgh seem to be struggling, Glasgow appeared better coached and stuck to their gameplan. Very little impact from the Edinburgh backs, Kinghorn at 10 doesn’t seem to be clicking / fairly easy to nullify him.
    Tuipulotu must start at 13 for Scotland so much more to his game than Harris has to offer.
    Is Jordan Scottish qualified yet?

  19. Not sure how to gauge Edinburgh at the moment, they just seem to be lacking something despite having mostly the personal and the lots of passion, perhaps unable to offer a plan B when they get beaten physically? Or is the tactical/playmaking side missing. A real shame as there is so much potential.

    Loving the go forward in Glasgows back row right now, Tuipolotu and Steyn always offering powerful yet slick attacking lines is making a difference, Tom Jordan is improving with each game.

  20. Was a good game which swung one way the the other. Both Sione’s excelled for Warriors, particularly Tuipulotu – who looks every inch the natural leader Glasgow need. Horne brought energy off the bench after a patchy performance from Price. Overall, Warriors did a great job in keeping Edinburgh’s big names pretty quiet.

    OK so Edinburgh have some injuries in the backs, but this wasn’t far off a full strength squad and it has to be a worry that they’re off the pace mid season.

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