‘I’m a lot happier than last weekend’ – Mallinder

Date published: December 19 2015

Northampton boss Jim Mallinder praised his side's response against Racing 92 as they kept alive their hopes of progression to the Champions Cup knockouts with a 9-9 draw.

The result leaves Saints two points behind the Paris team but with Racing having a game in hand, Northampton are underdogs to top the group.

Glasgow also remain in the mix in Pool 3 but Mallinder's immediate thought was one of happiness as his men responded from last week's defeat.

"I'm a lot happier than last weekend. There was real intensity and passion in our game, which is what you need in Europe," said Mallinder to EPC Rugby's website.

"Defensively we were very good and put them under pressure and got lot of turnovers. We attacked with real intent, but lacked a little bit of accuracy.

"We were up against a quality side and it was a good reply after last week. We are working on scoring tries and we need to improve in that area.

"We need the foundations in place and we are working on that, especially with the youngsters in the front row. We need to improve and I think we will do that as we go through the season."

He added: "We have got it all to do to qualify. But Racing have to go away to Glasgow and there is potential for them to lose there because it is a tough place to go.

"We need to win and get some bonus points in our last two games. It is a b it like our league position – we aren't where we want to be, but we are still in there fighting.

"We are playing without some big players in Tom Wood, Dylan Hartley and Callum Clark. Some of our senior in the backs need to play better, but they are all world class players and I think they will come good."