BERNARD Jackman wants the Dragons to bring the noise on and off the Rodney Parade pitch in their Guinness PRO14 opener against Leinster on Saturday.

The region get their season under way in Newport (kick-off 3.15pm) against PRO14 heavyweights as they start a new era under Welsh Rugby Union control.

Dragons bosses are targeting a bumper crowd to welcome in the new season as they aim for revenge against a Leinster team who romped to a 54-22 victory is the corresponding fixture in February.

And new head coach Jackman hopes that a vociferous backing from the stands can help his side upset the odds against his former province after a quartet of pre-season defeats to Montpellier, Northampton, Exeter and Glasgow.

“The players need the support and I promise you, they are giving it everything they have,” said the ex-Ireland hooker.

“All fans can ask for is an honest team who are working hard to get better so I’d like to hope we’d have a big crowd.

“Leinster will be bringing a decent team and it will be a challenge, but we need Rodney Parade to be a fortress.”

“I don’t care who comes to Rodney Parade we need to make sure it’s absolutely horrible for them in terms of the intensity we play at and hopefully with a massive crowd that gets behind the team.”

Jackman took over the reins from Kingsley Jones this summer in one of the first moves made by the WRU.

And one of the first things to strike the new boss was the lack of on-field chatter, something he wants to change with the arrivals of seasoned Test campaigners Gavin Henson and Zane Kirchner in the backs.

“Something I’ve been surprised by is how quiet we are as a team,” said Jackman, who spent the last six years with Grenoble in France.

“That’s often the case in teams with a losing record, people tend to shy away from speaking up and dominating and bossing others.

“The reality is that that’s how most performing teams work, there are lieutenants and soldiers.

“It needs to be clear on the field who is what, and you need your lieutenants and commanders to get your soldiers in the right position.”

Dragons members can bring a friend to the Leinster game for free by calling the ticket office on 01633 674990.

l More Dragons v Leinster news on page 40