April 02, 2021
Montpellier 26 - 21 Glasgow Warriors
European Challenge Cup match played at GGL Stadium on Friday April 2nd 2021 | No comments
TJ Ioane was sent off for a dangerous tackle Glasgow's Challenge Cup hopes are over after defeat to Montpellier this evening but the Warriors will know they let a huge opportunity slip away.
Glasgow went ahead with a penalty by fly-half Adam Hastings before Montpellier counterpart Alex Lozowksi levelled.
The pair exchanged penalties once again before the game was 20 minutes old, but Hastings' third effort from the tee looked to be enough for the Warriors to go into half time ahead.
With just over a minute remaining in the half however, Montpellier hooker Guilhem Guirado drove over to score and with Lozowksi adding the extras, the hosts opened up a four-point lead.
Montpellier scored again early in the second half, with a flowing backs move releasing Anthony Bouthier. Lozowski added the extras as the hosts opened up a healthy lead.
Glasgow remained in touch though as Hastings kicked another penalty, but TJ Ioane was sent off for the visitors as their hopes of overhauling Montpellier took a hit.
Lozowski and Hastings exchanged penalties once again, before the Glasgow fly-half's replacement Ross Thompson reduced the deficit to five points as the visitors refused to roll over.
Montpellier responded immediately through Lozowski, with Thompson's second penalty shortly after putting Warriors back in touch, but ultimately, they fell short.
"We can't be playing big games like this and giving away the number of penalties and cards that we do," said Glasgow Head Coach Danny Wilson after the match.
"Ultimately it isn't good enough. We're showing plenty of fight and we got ourselves back within a score which was good, but I think we'll look back on this game as a match we should have won.
"There were a couple of decisions that went against us - I thought there should have been a penalty try if Fraser Brown's try wasn't awarded, so that's a huge moment. I have no complaints with the red card, but it's still a very frustrating night."
The Warriors remained in touch throughout the closing stages, with George Horne and Ross Thompson almost sparking a late comeback for the visitors that would have stolen victory at the death. Wilson and his coaching team identified the positives, but the Glasgow boss knows that the match was one that got away from his side.
"When we got speed and tempo into the game, we showed the threat we could be to our opponents," said Wilson.
"Our kicking game overall I don't think was good enough, though, and that put us under pressure at times.
"The game was within our grasp. Let's remember the star-studded squad we've just played and that we were in touching distance of winning the game."
With a three-week break until the opening round of the Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup, the Warriors will now take some time to reflect and recharge ahead of the new competition getting underway.
Whilst still smarting from the defeat at GGL Stadium, Wilson believes his squad will benefit from the break and knows his team will come back raring to hit the ground running.
"The key now is the balancing act - we've got a number of internationals who have had a two-month long spell in the Six Nations bubble, have come straight back in and played tonight," explained Wilson.
"Some of those guys need a break, both mentally and physically.
"What we've got an opportunity to do now, though, is to build with everyone back in the building and guys like Fraser and George [Horne] back from injury. It gives us a bigger pool of players to develop with, and we'll hopefully see some good performances in the Rainbow Cup.
"We won three out of our last four league games and there are plenty of positives to take out of tonight even with the disappointing result."