Can Munster knock over Saracens in England?
CHAMPIONS CUP SPOTLIGHT: Munster’s poor record in semifinals in the last few years might be a concern ahead of their trip to the Ricoh Arena in Coventry on Saturday.
The 2006 and 2008 champions reached a record 14th European semifinal by edging out Edinburgh 17-13 at Murrayfield in the last eight, with wing Keith Earls scoring tries either side of half-time to secure victory.
The reward for that win is a clash with fellow two-time winners Saracens, who beat them 26-10 in Dublin in 2017 when they last met in the semifinals.
In 2018, Munster reached the Champions Cup semifinals once again, but they were outplayed by Racing 92 in Bordeaux.
In that same year, they lost to Leinster in the Pro14 semis at the RDS Arena.
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Munster centre Chris Farrell, 26, who played in last month’s quarterfinal against Edinburgh, emphasised how keen Munster are to reach their first Champions Cup final since 2008.
“It’s our record 14th semifinal, but we can’t go into this one with the same mindset we previously have had,” said Farrell.
“You can’t go out into these games and sit back and hope to win. We’ve got to enforce our game on them.
“The boys are extremely hungry, especially the ones that have been there, like Keith Earls. There’s an aura around weeks like this when Munster can progress in Europe.”
Farrell believes that the Irish province will need to match Saracens’ physicality if Munster are to reach the Champions Cup final at St James’ Park next month.
“They are consistently a really physical side, so that will be key for us is to stop their momentum,” the Irish international added. “They rely on set-piece and the contact area.
“They have been one of the biggest forces in Europe in the last few years and won every game in the pool stages, but we won’t be giving anything away.”
Source: @ChampionsCup & Independent.ie