Edinburgh co-captain Ben Vellacott has warned against his side underestimating Zebre when they travel to Parma on Friday.  

The Italian side were consigned to the foot of the URC table last season after failing to win a single game, and while their form hasn’t improved drastically this term – with one win from their opening nine matches, Vellacott remains wary of the trip to Parma.  

He said: “Zebre in the last few years have struggled to get any wins, but this year they've taken names at home, so we've got to be really wary of that.” 

He knows a victory – and ideally one with an accompanying try bonus point – would be a major boost to the club’s play-off ambitions.  

The one-cap Scotland scrum-half said: “If you look at the top half of the table, one loss and we could be all the way down to 10th or 11th and one win and you could be all the way up to the top.  

“Zebre is a real hard place to go - we found it pretty tough there last year and we only just scraped away with a win so we know how hard it's going to be.”  

Head coach Sean Everitt revealed props WP Nel and Javan Sebastian, lock Glen Young, half-backs Ali Price and Ben Healy and fullback Harry Paterson will all return from national team duty. 

READ MORE: Scotland stars return for Edinburgh's trip to Italy

Former Scotland captain Jamie Ritchie will also be available for the trip.  

Scotland Rugby News: Vellacott (left) says the return of Ben Healy and WP Nel is a boost to EdinburghVellacott (left) says the return of Ben Healy and WP Nel is a boost to Edinburgh (Image: SNS)

Vellacott knows their experience could be key against a Zebre side that is expected to have several released Italian internationals with points to prove after defeats to England and Ireland in the Six Nations. 

He added: “We've obviously got a good number of boys back which means we've got a good competitive squad to pick from going into this weekend's game."