CAPTAIN Gerrit-Jan van Velze reckons Worcester Warriors’ players need to change the way they “treat each other” and “behave around the place on a daily basis” in preparation for the new season.

The 31-year-old number eight insists “ability is not the problem” for Warriors who produced a number of fine showings in the past campaign.

But van Velze believes he and his team-mates need to undergo a self-assessment when they begin pre-season on July 1 to find out why they are unable to produce their best every week.

He spoke candidly about Worcester’s topsy-turvy campaign after they scored impressive home victories over Sale Sharks and Gloucester.

The back-to-back wins sealed Warriors’ place in the Gallagher Premiership but van Velze is desperate to avoid another season scrapping it out towards the bottom.

“Those results show that it is not the ability that we are lacking,” said the South African who has been at Sixways since 2014.

“There are a few things that we need to change in the off-season.

“We have got to change our culture with the way we behave around the place on a daily basis and the way we treat each other.

“There is a long road ahead of us but it is nice to know that ability is not the problem.”

Warriors have ended up in the bottom three in 11 of their 13 seasons in the Premiership with the best finish of eighth coming in 2006.

“There is a reason this club have been where they have been in the past how many years so we have got to look at ourselves during the summer,” van Velze continued.

“You can’t change any of this during the season.

“It has got to start from day one when you get together again and prepare for the next campaign.

“It might not be massive things.

“It is just small things we as a playing group can change and look at our own behaviours.

“Ability is not our problem. We have shown that throughout the season and in the past season that when the team is prepared well and when the team’s mind is on it we play great rugby and can beat anybody in this league.

“But it is about doing that consistently.

“We have got to look at ourselves. We can’t point fingers and keep looking for excuses.”

In the league, Worcester claimed nine victories — the joint best total in their top-flight history — but lost all but two of their matches away from home.

Van Velze felt his side had made “massive progress” this term as they picked up 10 more points than they did last season and reached the knockout stages of the Premiership Cup and European Challenge Cup.

But he added: “If I was to sit back and tell you that it has been an exceptional season and I’ve enjoyed every second of it I would be lying to you.

“We have got to find a way (to change things).

“There are successful organisations all over sport that managed to do that so there is no reason why we can’t.”

Asked whether the inconsistency issue was down to their pre-match mindset, van Velze said: “It is difficult to say because if I knew (the answer) we would have done it throughout the season.

“It can be anything from the way we treat each other at the club and the way people feel valued to the way we prepare and the way we recover.

“There is a wide variety of things it could be.

“We are an extremely fit outfit and have shown that.

“We won games in the last minute that we should not have done.

“We have come on in leaps and bounds and that Bath game, which was a once-in-a-lifetime experience (when Warriors won in the 99th minute), was just one example of that.

“It might be the mental side of it where we are not preparing for it mentally or mature enough to know how to prepare for it.

“We have just been lacking in those parts during the season.

“This is a tough season so if there are any chinks in your armour they are going to get found out.

“I can’t put my finger on one, two or three things.

“It is about getting away from the game for five or six weeks and then starting again and looking at ourselves first before we start pointing the fingers outwards.”