Nigel Melville knows it'll be tough in Ulster, and the Gloucester director of rugby is well aware of how important the Friday night game at Ravenhill is to his side's chances of Heineken Cup quarter-final qualification.
Gloucester currently sit in second place in pool six on 13 points, one point behind leaders Stade Francais, who they place at Kingsholm on Sunday 16 January. The West Country club know that two wins from the next two games would see them top the group, but defeat in Ulster could end their chances.
Commenting on www.gloucesterrugbyclub.com Melville said: "Of course it's going to be hard out there. They've got a superb record at home, just like all of the Irish provinces. It looks like the wind and rain will be in force, but we know that we have to win. We believe that we can qualify for the knock-out stages, but to keep us in control we have to get the points in Ireland."
Melville and coach Dean Ryan recall hooker James Parkes, in place of Mefin Davies, who has played the last three games for Gloucester. Parkes and Academy player Rob Elloway are Gloucester's last two registered hookers, after long term injuries to Chris Fortey and Olivier Azam.
Elsewhere in the line-up Simon Amor returns to the side at stand-off with Henry Paul moving to inside centre. James Bailey replaces Seti Kiole on the left wing, as the Tongan is not registered for European competition.
Absent through injury are Duncan McRae (knee - expected return 16/22 January), Chris Fortey (ankle - long term), Olivier Azam (shoulder - February/March), James Simpson-Daniel (shoulder - mid/end of January), Oliver Morgan (wrist - mid-January), Rory Teague (thumb - end of January), Brad Davies (ankle - week by week) and James Merriman (knee - February).
15. Jon Goodridge
14. Marcel Garvey
13. Terry Fanolua
12. Henry Paul
11. James Bailey
10. Simon Amor
9. Andy Gomarsall
1. Christo Bezuidenhout
2. James Parkes
3. Phil Vickery
4. Adam Eustace
5. Alex Brown
6. Jake Boer (c)
7. Andy Hazell
8. Adam Balding
16. Rob Elloway, 17. Terry Sigley, 18. Nick Wood, 19. Peter Buxton, 20. James Forrester, 21. Alex Page, 22. Nathan Mauger
Jonny May's superb late score capped a thrilling 40-32 European play-off win over Connacht on Sunday. The winger spoke afterwards of his team's character and spirit as he looked ahead to one more week of rugby.
Speaking to GRTV this afternoon, Director of Rugby David Humphreys hailed the 'never say die' attitude of the team, after despite not being at their best, fighting back to take a 40-32 win after extra time over Connacht.
Jonny May continues on the wing on Sunday as Connacht come to town, and the England wing explains to the local media this week that he is delighted with his form and is looking forward to taking on Pat Lam's men.
Speaking to the local media this week, front rower John Afoa is familiar with the challenge of Connacht from his time in Belfast, and the World Cup winner is fully aware of the challenge they pose ahead of Sunday's meeting in the Champions Cup play off
Speaking ahead of Gloucester's European Rugby Champions play-off against Connacht on Sunday (Kingsholm, 3:30pm), Director of Rugby David Humphreys admitted that he's glad to have more players available than in recent weeks ahead of a tough fixture.
Nick Wood captained the Cherry and Whites on Saturday afternoon, and the experienced front rower expressed his pride in the young squad in defeat to Bath on the final day of the Aviva Premiership season.
Lewis Ludlow scored Gloucester's opening try in the 30-50 defeat at Bath on Saturday, part of an impressive performance by the young back row forward. Speaking after the game, he paid tribute to the young Gloucester side who went toe to toe with the Aviva Premiership semi-finalists.
Speaking to the local media after the game, Director of Rugby David Humphreys gave an honest assessment of the game, and expressed his pride in the way his young charges had performed against the title-chasing hosts.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester Rugby scrum half Callum Braley is excited by the challenge of the West Country Derby, and the ex-Bristol man reveals the squad will be giving their all.
At the recent London Irish game, personnel from the Imjin Barracks in Innsworth, including Gurkhas, were present, holding a collection to raise funds for ShelterBox to aid relief from the recent Nepal Earthquake Appeal.
It was a thriller at Kingsholm on Sunday afternoon, as Gloucester snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, leveling the scores in the final minute before triumphing in extra time over a spirited Connacht side.