NEWCASTLE FALCONS will attempt to maintain the best away record in the Aviva Premiership when they travel to Worcester Wolves tomorrow afternoon.

Falcons have won six of their nine away league games this season, with their only defeats having come against the top three sides in the division, Exeter, Saracens and Wasps.

Their performances have taken them to fourth position in the Premiership table, and given them every chance of making the end-of-season play-offs and claiming a place in next season’s Champions Cup.

European success could be on the agenda this season, with Newcastle preparing for a Challenge Cup semi-final against Gloucester in two weeks’ time, and the campaign is building to quite a climax with Falcons still fighting on two fronts.

“We’re delighted with where we are, but there’s still a way to go,” said defence coach John Wells. “It’s probably fair to say we’ve already hit out goals in terms of the targets we set at the start of the season, but having got ourselves into this position, we can turn it into something even better than what we set out to do eight months ago.

“A lot of things have worked for us this season. The guys have grown as players, and the signings we made in the summer have added a lot of international experience. Guys like Josh Matavesi and Toby Flood are vastly experienced at playing in big games, they know what standards are needed in training every single day and they’re helping accelerate the growth of what was already a pretty decent foundation of a squad.

“Momentum also makes a difference. I think there are a lot of sides in the Premiership who are pretty evenly matched, and there are a lot of games we’ve won by a point or two which could easily have been lost by the same margin were it not for the self-belief we have shown.”

Falcons will start as strong favourites against a Worcester side another couple of victories to ensure they finish above London Irish and avoid relegation to the Championship.

Newcastle were 35-8 winners over Worcester in the Premiership’s opening round, but their record at Sixways in the last few seasons has been poor.

“Our record at Worcester isn’t great,” said Wells. “The last time we won there was in our first season back from the Championship when Mike Blair snuck over, and even on that day Worcester were all over us.

“Since then, we’ve taken a couple of good beatings there and we have to rise to the occasion. If we get a result down there, and other games fall in our favour, we’re in a great position in the table. But to do that, we have to focus on the job and Worcester aren’t a bad side.

“They’re similar to ourselves in many ways, they play a lot of football in the backs and they’ve toughened up that forward core, so it will be a tough but interesting game.”

Wing duo Vereniki Goneva and Sinoti Sinoti return to Falcons’ starting line-up tomorrow, having sat out last weekend’s Challenge Cup quarter-final win over Brive.

Sam Stuart retains his place at scrum-half, with centre Matavesi set to line up against his former club. Adam Radwan could make his Premiership debut from the replacements’ bench, having impressed during Falcons’ Challenge Cup campaign.

Newcastle Falcons: Tait, Goneva, Harris, Matavesi, Sinoti, Flood, Stuart; Lockwood, Cooper, S Wilson, Green, Robinson, Olmstead, Welch, Latu.

Replacements: Lawson, Vickers, Davison, Witty, Chick, Hodgson, Waldouck, Radwan.