Last week, we had confirmation that Newcastle Falcons would regain their place in English rugby’s top competition, the Premiership, following one season back in the Championship. They had won all 15 of their matches before the season was brought to a close early, due to the coronavirus outbreak, but despite protests from another of the divisions bigger names, Ealing Trailfinders, the Falcons are back. They will of course take the place of Saracens, who will be in the Championship next season after their enforced relegation due to the salary cap scandal.
So, now that we have confirmation of their Premiership return, here are just a few notable players in their team that fans of the top division can look out for next season – whenever that actually will be.
The club captain and back row player is a homegrown talent, and has played for his hometown club in his entire career. He has been the skipper since 2012, when he became the youngest ever club captain in the Falcons’ history, at the age of 22. He led the team to promotion to the Premiership back in 2013, and now has two promotions on his CV following this one. He was one of the best players in their previous stint in the Premiership, and can be expected to be just as important this time around if they want to stay in the league.
The veteran former England fly-half re-signed for Newcastle Falcons in 2017, 9 years after leaving them for Leicester Tigers, and then a period of time at Toulouse followed that. He has scored 269 points in 38 games for them in his second time at Kingston Park, and has vast experience on the rugby field. His return to Newcastle saw him link up with another former Leicester player, and former Leicester head coach, in Dean Richards, although the two never crossed over in their times at Welford Road. If the Falcons want to have any hope of challenging for survival, they will be relying on Flood to kick solidly throughout the season.
The flying winger has been one of Newcastle’s biggest threats over the last few seasons, racking up 100 points in 94 games since his arrival in the North East in 2013. In the Falcons’ last stay in the Premiership, they had two reliable try-scoring wingers in Sinoti and another former Leicester player, Vereniki Goneva. Internationally, Sinoti, whilst born in New Zealand, plays for Samoa, but was left out of the team for the World Cup last year. He is 34 now, but can still be a threat when he is in top form. He will be essential to any hopes Newcastle have of staying up.
The exciting winger joined Newcastle from Bath last summer, ahead of the Falcons’ return to the Championship. He was one of Bath’s standout players during his time at the Rec, and is known for his quick footwork and speed when on the move. He poses a constant threat to opposing defences, and is capable of scoring several tries a game when in top form. Like Sinoti Sinoti, he was also born in New Zealand, but chose to play his international rugby for Tonga. He also played rugby league in his career, before switching to union.
These are just four players to look out for when Newcastle Falcons make their return to the Premiership next season, and they are a mix of exciting players and experienced players. If Newcastle want to stand any chance of remaining in the Premiership after next season, they will be relying on these players to be in top form in all games, but we have seen how easily the Falcons can slip up, and let the season run away from them. Let’s see if that happens this time around.