Bonus point win which they now have makes them 3rd seeds and home to Toulon.
Playing at home is all you can ask for really, seems to make a huge difference to the rugby. Is it the crowd swaying the ref or something?
Leinster v Saracens, Clermont v Racing, Munster v Toulon, Scarlets v La Rochelle. SFs: Leinster/Saracens v Scarlets/La Rochelle, Clermont/Racing v Munster/Toulon.
Tough quarter for Leinster but arguably less tricky semi if they win.
The tough draw may suit Leinster. I don’t think they can trust in or hope for any other team to beat them so Leinster’s best chance of beating Saracens might well be in a home quarter final. Saracens are finding form again and are getting lots of players back from injury. A lot of 6Nations rugby to be played beforehand, however. Both teams could pick up injuries.
French clubs taking this tournament seriously again?
Morgan Parra (one of the good players France does have, I reckon - and a decent goal-kicker) has been ruled out of the 6 Nations opener against Ireland. I find it hard to believe he is only 29 - he seems to have been around for a long time now.
Was also surprised. Made his debut for France at 19
blow for them, he’s a quality 9.
Unused by Guy Noves, apparently.
Tadhg Bierne one of 4 Irishmen nominated for European Player Of The Year. No IRFU exemption for International selection, what hope had Zebo got!
If Leinster go all the way, it’s Sexton’s or Furlongs I’d say. If Saracens win in the Aviva, Farrell probably get the nod.
Saracens won’t win in the Avivs unless Leinster lose some key players.
Sexton missed both Montpellier games, and went off after 3 minutes in the second Exeter game, so he’s essentially played 3 Champions Cup games! Strange he was picked.
Fardy also missed both Montpellier games so played 4 out of 6.
I’d go with Tadhg too. Although I think Henshaw is unlucky to miss out
Amazing that only one Saracens player was picked, given that they are European Champions. And then they go and pick their most mechanical player. I’d pick Jamie George and Maro Itoje miles ahead of Farrell.
The award is for this years tournament. Saracens have struggled big time needless to say.
They must be anticipating Leinster to go all the way! Award won’t be confirmed till May I believe.
Seems ridiculous to be announcing nominations when the business end of the tournament has yet to happen.
There’s still potential for Owen Farrell to be sent-off in a quarter final for calling the referee a f*cking cheat or for one of his trade-mark, sneaky high-tackles.
Previous winners have all been either Irish or English.
totally. it only really starts now.
A flag waving exercise to maintain interest since the 6 Nations is starting up very soon?
The rationale behind it is to reward players and clubs who slogged it out throughout the group stages. So they say anyway. All 8 Quarter Finalists are represented afaik.
There’s a public voting system in place all the way to May, combined with a panel of judges. So the cynic in me says they’re announcing the contenders now to get as much $$$ as possible (presume it’s a text message job!). Like a prolonged X factor.