Leeds Carnegie need that winning feeling - Barrow

Winning is all that matters for down-at-heel Leeds Carnegie on Sunday – with the performance secondary.

That's the view of experienced centre Scott Barrow with Carnegie – unable to pretty much buy a win for love nor money in a torrid campaign which has seen them lose 12 out of an unlucky 13 matches in all competitions – tackling Italian minnows Crociati Rugby in the Amlin Challenge Cup at Headingley in the first leg of a cup double-header.

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Taking into account friendlies, Carnegie have incredibly been defeated in 16 out of 17 games in 2010-11, with their sole win bonus arriving when they saw off Romanian lesser lights Bucharest Oaks in Eastern Europe in a 23-9 verdict on October 23.

And you have to go way back to April 25 for their last victory on home soil in their famous Survival Sunday success over Worcester Warriors

While Carnegie's mantra has always been on performance, Sunday promises to be an exception to the rule as the club start their preparations for a potentially make-or-break return to Premiership duties over the festive season, starting with a monumental Aviva Premiership clash at Newcastle Falcons on Boxing Day.

Barrow said: "You can't underestimate how much confidence you get from just one win – regardless of who it's against.

"Hopefully, we'll get our first win at home and then concentrate a bit more on performance the week after.

"I don't think it matters how we win this weekend; as long as we get the 'W'.

"We've got a couple of games now where we are probably going to be favourites and we need to gain confidence from these games and take it into the Newcastle match.

"Then we've got Gloucester at home on New Year's Day and basically we are looking for four wins."

The seeds of Carnegie's turbo-charged run in the second half of last season may have been firmly sown during a tremendous 16-15 victory at Falcons on December 27 last year but, interestingly, that victory followed on from back-to-back confidence-building successes over Bucharest in the space of a week.

And the Yorkshiremen are hoping for a sense of deja vu just under 12 months on.

The massive festive bonus represented a seminal point in Carnegie's campaign, from which they never looked back, with everyone at Headingley clinging to the hope that lightning could strike twice and reignite their season with a transfusion of belief.

Barrow added: "We've done some good things (this season), but sometimes, you just don't get your just rewards.

"We've come away from a couple of games thinking: 'How have we lost that?'.

"But the players have said there must be a turning point and I think it's got to be the Christmas period for us.

"We need to win our next four games and Backy (Neil Back) has stressed it as well.

"We were hoping to rectify a poor performance (against Harlequins) so in that respect, it means we are still stewing on our last game after the Northampton game was called off.

"But we're still confident.

"Newcastle at this stage last year were in a similar position to us and Sale were, going into the Christmas games.

"They (Sale) finished pretty well and Newcastle got a few wins and we got six wins after Christmas.

"If we can win 75 per cent of our games right through, we'll be certain to stay up."

Former Leeds forward Gary Powell has been forced to retire due to a long-standing Achilles injury.

The 31-year-old Cardiff front-row suffered the injury against Leinster in March this year.

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