DEAN Ryan has warned the Dragons that their bid for a rare derby double will be scuppered unless they improve their discipline against the Scarlets this afternoon.

The Rodney Parade region hunt another upset after dealing a blow to the west Walians' United Rugby Championship play-off hopes in Llanelli last weekend.

The Dragons won 38-27 out west and now hunt their first double over the Scarlets since 2007/8 and their first derby double since turning over the Ospreys twice in 2010/11.

They are also chasing a victory that will stop their winless streak in Newport stretching beyond a year, while the last time their supporters were able to toast a Rodney Parade success from the stands was before the coronavirus pandemic when the Cheetahs were beaten on February 29, 2020.

The Dragons are still slight underdogs for today's fixture and cannot afford a repeat of their last outing on home soil when a glut of penalties allowed Gloucester to enjoy a comeback win thanks to their strong driving lineout.

Ryan knows that they dodged a bullet in Llanelli when they lost the penalty count 16-7 - although the Scarlets received three yellows (one high tackle and two professional fouls) to the Dragons' one (persistent infringing) – and that they will pay the price for getting on the wrong side of Scottish official Sam Grove-White this afternoon.

South Wales Argus: Dragons boss Dean RyanDragons boss Dean Ryan

"Our discipline is still top of the menu," said Ryan. "We need to take more ownership of that as a team and need to understand in any game there is a risk element, but we can't be facing 16-3 [on the penalty count] after 60 minutes.

"In other environments we would have been blown out by then and therefore the rest of our game is irrelevant.

"If we can get those conversations and ownership on the field then hopefully, we can get a better control of it."

Ryan gave the players their moment in the sun last Saturday before bringing them back to earth at their Ystrad Mynach headquarters at the start of this week, telling them that there is plenty of room for improvement.

"It's definitely easier to push messages when the result has gone your way," said the director of rugby. "I didn't think we played as well as we can, I do think there is more in us.

"I went home unhappy with the way we played at certain times, and we need to control the game more when we've got those periods of ascendency.

"I recognise that comes with a bit of confidence and we've been trying to do that against the backdrop of not getting the results that we want.

"Hopefully the weekend is another staging post for building confidence that we can play better and can go on to control more of the game."