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Play in 5 speed tranny !??

I have a 1988 Audi 80.  It has the 5 speed tranny.  It has the typical
slack in the transmission that cars with high mileage seem to develop.

When I put it in first, or change gears and release the clutch, the 
transmissions thumps or slaps a bit as it takes up the slack.
My mechanic claims that it is due to the pressure springs in the
clutch plate that have become weak, and that when I replace 
my clutch plate this will go away.  However,  I am thinking more 
on the lines of some play having developed somewhere in 
the differential.  Any clues or thought on this matter.

I wouldn't have really cared but whenever I change gears
the car really jerks and I though this was because the engine
speed was not falling fast enough.  However it drops to around
1800 - 2000 rpm between gears shifts which I think is normal.  Is it ?
If it is, then maybe it is this slack that is causing it ??  Only the
3rd to 4th and 4th to 5th gear cahnge involves no jerks whatsover
when the clutch is engaged.      TIA.

Best Regards,             

1988 Audi 80      
1990 Audi 100.