Saints set for 'do or die' clash with Quins

Piers Francis and Co face a crucial game against Harlequins this afternoon
Piers Francis and Co face a crucial game against Harlequins this afternoon

Piers Francis has labelled Saints’ clash with Harlequins ‘do or die’.

Francis and Co travel to the Stoop this afternoon (kick-off 3pm) for a must-win battle in the race for a Gallagher Premiership top-four place.

Saints lost 40-31 at home to Gloucester last Sunday, leaving the black, green and gold seven points behind fourth-placed Quins with four games to go.

And Francis said: “The bigger picture is that we sit seventh and we need to do our job.

“The good thing is that we play Quins, who are a team above us, and we need to play teams above us to take those points away from them.

“All roads lead to The Stoop and it’s do or die on Saturday.

“Everything’s going to go into Saturday.

“Top four has to be our focus. I know it’s been taken out of our hands a little bit but if we take five points at Quins on Saturday, we can be just two points behind, then who knows?

“We’ve got to try to pick up at least 15 points and see what happens.

“It’s about keeping that belief in big games against Newcastle, who are fighting for their lives, and Exeter, who are going to be really tough.

“We have to look at ourselves and say ‘we’ve got to win’.

“Our message is that Saints should be in the top four and we’ll put more pressure on ourselves than anyone else.”

So, do Saints believe they can beat Quins?

“Yes, 100 per cent,” Francis said.

“The Sale team we put 60 on rolled them over last weekend.

“I know they will be hurting, but we’ll be hurting from the defeat to Gloucester so I still believe we’ve got more motivation and desire than any other team.

“We have to have more desire than any other team because we’re in that middle part of the table and we’ve got high aspirations.

“We’re not a team that wants to be middle of the road.

“Every one of our players wants to be top four.

“We don’t just want to be milling along the road.”