Leo Cullen believes his Leinster side are in better shape now than they were at this stage last season as they look to double their win rate.
Tonight Leinster are in line for a spot in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Champions Cup while Cullen’s men look to extend their five-point lead from the first leg in tonight’s showdown (5.30pm) at the Aviva Stadium.
More than 30,000 tickets were sold and Cullen was able to welcome back Irish front row duo Andrew Porter and Rónan Kelleher. After falling in the interrupted run to the European semi-finals last year when they were beaten by Ronan O’Gara’s La Rochelle, Cullen believes Leinster are in better form this time.
“We had a bit of a lull (last season) and I wasn’t sure if we ever got back up,” Cullen admitted.
“This year is very different so we gave the boys some space behind the Six Nations.
“It feels like we need to rebuild and with both games, Munster away and Connacht in Europe, there are a lot of parts of those performances where we just feel like we haven’t quite gotten going, so we hope. re on this positive curve. But I would never take anything for granted.
“We love this tournament, we want to advance as much as possible, we take every game very, very seriously. As you can see we were very upset with how things turned out for us earlier in the tournament but we are in a KO game here now and it means so much to so many people.
“So we just tried to do everything we could to make sure we put on our best performance yet this season. That’s what it’s all about, just trying to do our best and we’ll see where that takes us.”
https://www.independent.ie/sport/rugby/champions-cup/leo-cullen-insists-leinster-are-better-placed-this-year-for-double-bid-after-lull-last-season-41555506.html Leo Cullen insists Leinster are better suited for a doubles bid this year after last season’s ‘lull’