Lack of possession costed Gloucester - David Humphreys

David Humphreys' Gloucester side came up short in Edinburgh
David Humphreys' Gloucester side came up short in Edinburgh

Gloucester rugby director David Humphreys rued lack of possession from his team as they succumbed to a 17-25 defeat to Stade Francais in the final of the European Challenge Cup at Murrayfield Stadium on Friday.

Even though, Jonny May and Billy Burns helped the Cherry and Whites to a 10 point lead early in the game, Gloucester failed to seize on the advantage by letting Sergio Parisse, Jonathan Danty and Geoffrey Doumayrou to cross over for the Top 14 side.

Ross Moriarty tried to keep Gloucester in the hunt for the title with a 78th minute touchdown but the gap was too much to be narrowed down allowing Stade Francais clinch their maiden European title after four attempts.

Humphreys said: "It's very, very hard to play any sort of rugby when you have no ball, when your set-piece is under pressure, and I thought Stade put us under massive pressure at set-piece.

"One thing you can never question about this team is the character, the determination, and they defended magnificently for large periods of the game.

"But against a team as good as Stade, at one point you are going to slip a tackle if we can't keep the ball. Ultimately we just didn't have any possession.

"We had two set-pieces in the Stade Francais half the whole game, one scrum, one lineout, and our game has been built around good field positions. We were under pressure and our penalty count was high.

"We couldn't put Stade under pressure in the same way they were making us defend for long periods.

"There were three things - lack of field position, lack of quality set-piece delivery and too many penalties - (which) cost us the opportunity to win the game."


European Rugby Challenge Cup 2017/18 - Points Tables


European Rugby Challenge Cup 2017/18 - Points Tables