BERNARD Jackman hopes the need to impress potential suitors will ensure the Dragons still get a tune out of the players that are heading for the exit door in the summer, writes Chris Kirwan.

The Rodney Parade region have lost four games on the spin, the latest loss being a 47-13 hammering at the hands of the Scarlets last Friday.

The Guinness PRO14 champions ran seven tries past the injury-hit Dragons in Llanelli and things don’t get much easier – on Saturday night they have to win at Bordeaux-Begles to keep alive their hopes of qualifiying for the quarters of the European Challenge Cup.

Jackman hopes to have Wales hooker Elliot Dee back for the trip to France but is hindered by a lengthy list of absentees.

It leaves the head coach needing to get the most out of a number of individuals who know they are likely to be leaving in the summer to make room for his desired dozen new recruits.

“It was a mishmash of players playing and some of them won’t be here next year, that’s the reality,” said the head coach after the Scarlets game.

“The good thing is that not many of the people who are leaving have contracts at other places. They are going to have to try and get themselves into form, if they get game time again, to convince a club that they are worth a punt.

“But once we get to February we have a batch of boys coming back [from injury], so we just have to manage these next two weeks.”

The Dragons are without ten likely first-choice players through injury and have had to turn to their academy to fill the void. Jackman believes the youngsters were let down by the older heads in Llanelli.

He said: “Every reasonable person understands that we don’t have much depth. We’ve never had our best XV – and that doesn’t happen any more in rugby – but to have the quality of players that we have injured is very difficult.

“I’ve never seen anything like it with twelve starters out, then we go to the next level down and even those are injured.

“In fairness I thought that the youngsters did really well, it was the senior players who made more errors.

“The players are a bit shocked but that’s the level. We didn’t build any phases, our handling was poor, there wasn’t any area of our game that was good and our kicking was horrendous.”

“I hope that’s the last time that we come here and not be competitive, having said that credit to the Scarlets for ripping us apart and were full value for even more points. They are an excellent side and where we want to get to.”