Chris Gibbes: Ospreys have to learn from mistakes against Racing Metro

Ospreys forwards coach reacts to their European Champions Cup defeat to the Parisians in Le Mans

Chris Gibbes has urged the Ospreys to learn from their mistakes after their 18-14 defeat to Racing Metro on Saturday night.

After last week’s draw in Swansea, Racing built a 15-0 half-time lead in the European Champions Cup match in Le Mans with tries from Juan Imhoff and Teddy Thomas and the first of two penalties from Johan Goosen.

The Ospreys hit back in the second half with scores through Rhys Webb and Eli Walker, both converted by Dan Biggar, but again came up short having to make do with a losing bonus point.

“We’ve actually got to take some of these opportunities and turn them into wins because there was a definite opportunity tonight that we’ve left out there,” Gibbes said.

“Again, we’re disappointed but very proud. We’re very, very proud of this group, but we’ve just got to make sure we learn from these opportunities and take the wins when they are there because tonight I thought we should have won.”

Despite a lengthy injury list, the young Ospreys side again showed plenty of desire to run the ball against Racing’s powerful side, and Gibbes admits it was a part of the Ospreys’ plan.

“We tried to keep the ball on the park for as long as possible and try to run them,” he added.

“We wanted to try and limit the set-piece and their lineout and for large parts of the game we achieved that.

“The fact that Racing Metro only had four lineouts tells the story of the game.

“We limited their ball and we had enough, we probably created enough opportunities, but at critical times we probably weren’t ruthless enough to finish them off.”

For us two weeks in a row to push a big powerhouse like that, as close as we did, tells a story of what we are about.

Chris Gibbes

The result leaves the Welsh region third in pool five with two games to go, six points behind second-placed Racing and seven behind leaders Northampton Saints.

Mathematically, the Osprey still have a slim chance of qualifying for the last eight, but they will need to defeat Northampton and Treviso in the final two rounds to achieve that.

And forwards coach Gibbes has conceded that they were disappointed with the result, despite the manner of the performance.

“We’re really, really disappointed we lost that game,” he said.

“We thought we’d done enough to win. Obviously, they are a very good side and we are still a young, developing team, so for us two weeks in a row to push a big powerhouse like that, as close as we did, tells a story of what we are about.

“We’re incredibly proud of that group. To come over here and put out that second half performance in particular, and get so close.

“We’ve had a few injuries, but as a group we don’t really talk too much about that.

“It’s not ideal by any stretch of the imagination, but we dig in and the next guy up tries to do his best. I think that’s all you can really ask for.”

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