Aviva Premiership: Goode targets ‘massive’ season for Wasps
Aviva Premiership: Andy Goode is hoping London Wasps can continue to build on their recent progress
Despite their hellish start to the new Aviva Premiership season, former England fly-half Andy Goode hopes Wasps can continue on their upward curve.
Dai Young’s men take on Premiership finalists Saracens in the opening weekend Double Header at Twickenham, then play host to champions Northampton Saints.
We need to keep on progressing as a club like we have done over the past few years and hopefully we can keep building and get Wasps back to where they belong
The Adams Park trophy cabinet has been locked since Wasps were crowned Premiership champions in 2008, yet they will be fighting for silverware on all fronts this season having snuck into the inaugural European Rugby Champions Cup with a play-off victory over Stade Francais in May.
And Goode believes the new season represents a golden opportunity for Wasps to prove they belong in the upper echelons of English rugby.
“It’s an exciting season for us coming up – we’re back in the top tier of European rugby so we really need to push on as a club in the Premiership too,” said Goode, who won 17 England caps.
“Our goal at the start of last season was to qualify for the Heineken Cup by finishing in the top six and although we missed out on that we managed to sneak in through the back door.
“To finish as we did, with that double header against Stade Francais was amazing and it was a great finish to the season.
“Dai (Young) said it masked an average season and I think it did but our goal was ultimately achieved and we’re looking forward to another massive season.
“We need to keep on progressing as a club like we have done over the past few years and hopefully we can keep building and get Wasps back to where they belong.”
Goode missed the chance to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in last season’s opening day 16-15 reverse to Harlequins, having hit the post with a last-minute conversion, following Tom Palmer’s try, that would have got Wasps off to a winning start.
But the evergreen 34-year-old is confident he can open up this campaign in just the right way – and insists retirement plans couldn’t be further from his mind.
“My only target is to just keep playing as much as possible – I love this game and I’d like to keep playing after this year as well,” he added.
“I think I ended up playing about 28 games last year which, at my age, is pretty good! Playing is still as enjoyable as ever as you get older but training does become harder.”