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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Scarlets

by Jim O'Connor, 2018-05-25

Leinster can make history in their final match of the season.

They can become the first team outside of France and England to win a European Cup/League double. It was a nervy finish last week against Munster and in truth they rode their luck at times. Both teams got good and bad decisions off a referee who was utterly out of his depth and who mystifyingly has been awarded this week's final too. But the real luck was that their dodgy defending out wide wasn't exposed more mainly due to Munster's dreadful passing. Passes were flung high, forward and wide and poor defensive reads were glossed over but the Scarlets backline would have been licking their lips.
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Munster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2018-05-18

Well that was way more tense that we expected but Leinster have their fourth star!

At the final whistle the main feeling was one of relief amongst the fans and that Leinster had gotten away with it as Remi Tales's attempted drop goal drifted well wide. Racing undoubtedly fought bravely and defended superbly, but they were also cynical as hell at the breakdown and they were allowed to be so by the incompetent team of officials led by Wayne Barnes. It's noteworthy that this was only Barnes's second final and when you remember his only previous one was another pig of a match in the final of 2010 between Toulouse and Biarritz, it makes sense. He is simply an inconsistent and arrogant referee who ruins games with his very presence and his retirement will be a cause for celebration on the beautiful day it arrives.
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Racing '92

by Jim O'Connor, 2018-05-11

Leinster are back in the top European final for the first time in six years.

When Leinster were last in the final demolishing Ulster in Twickenham, it's fair to say Leinster fans became almost nonchalant with the success and perhaps the players lost their hunger also. The following season they failed to even qualify from their pool. A quarter-final and a semi-final defeat against the same team in Toulon followed in the next two seasons. However such was the toxic nature of the Matt O'Connor regime, those respectable European performances couldn't save his job.
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Match Preview: Connacht Rugby vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2018-04-27

Last week pretty much went perfectly to plan.

The Leinster pack just bullied their Scarlets into submission and Tadhg Beirne was finally nullified at the breakdown. Now it's Bilbao and Racing 92 but Leinster will be quietly confident. Before that though it's one more inter-pro and Leinster will be looking to pull off a clean sweep of local battles by winning their sixth derby of the season. They take on a Connacht side who are coming off a terrible first season under Kieran Keane. They've only won six league games and if Zebre win and Connacht lose this Saturday, they face the prospect of finishing last in their pool, two years after they won the title.
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Scarlets

by Jim O'Connor, 2018-04-20

Let's hope it is just a lucky omen.

Before Leinster played Saracens in the quarter-final they warmed up with their worst performance of the season away to Ospreys. Last week they warmed up to play Scarlets in the semi-final with an even worse performance. Credit to Benetton, we said they were no longer anyone's mugs and they thoroughly deserved their win. They were smart, physical and well organised in defence but when they had the chance they played some good rugby too. Leinster's performance was marked by arrogance and complacency as they just seemed to think they had to turn up to win. Leinster's starting team is vastly different to the one that started last weekend but it's a great lesson to the squad to not take anything for granted.
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