Gavin Duffy knows Connacht will need to go up another level if they are to beat Toulouse for the second time in two weeks when they come to The Sportsground in search of revenge on Saturday.
The 32-year-old, one of Connacht’s four squad captains, expects the French powerhouse to be an even more formidable opponent in the wake of Connacht’s shock 16-14 win at Stade Ernest Wallon in the first of their back-to-back Heineken Cup encounters on Sunday.
Connacht have had a difficult season to date, with just two wins in the RaboDirect Pro12 so far, but Duffy insists that the team has performed well enough this season to travel to France believing they could get a result.
Speaking to RTÉ Sport’s The Rugby Show, he said: "We haven’t put the whole 80 minutes together but the belief comes from the fact that we can compete against those teams when we do get it right.
“Toulouse is obviously a step up but we believe in our process. We have trained really well this season and just haven’t put a whole package together for 80 minutes. That was our main focus because we knew without that, Toulouse would be a very dangerous team.”
But the 32-year-old expects a further step up when Connacht face Toulouse again at an expected full-house in an evening kick-off at The Sportsground on Saturday.
He added: “I’m sure Toulouse will go up a level but I will be hugely disappointed if we don’t go up a level as well. We’re going to have huge, expectant crowd and at home at The Sportsground we always back ourselves. We like to think that it is somewhere different and challenging for teams to come.
“These are the nights we relish and I’ll be hugely disappointed if we don’t improve our performance because in the end of the day that is what we will be judged on.”