After a gap of more than 9 years Glasgow and Saracens renewed their rivalry with a Champions Cup quarter-final in 2017. That was soon followed by clashing in the pool stages this season when it quickly looked to be written in the stars that it would be a 2018/19 triple bill with another meeting in the knockout stages…
A Grand Day Out
2016/17 Champions Cup quarter final
2 April 2017 at Allianz Park (report)
Tries: Chris Ashton (2), Marcelo Bosch, Brad Barritt
Conversions: Owen Farell (3)
Penalties: Owen Farrell (4)
Glasgow Warriors 13
Tries: Lee Jones, Ryan Wilson
Penalties: Finn Russell
After nearly 20 years of trying Glasgow finally made it to a European Cup quarter-final. It came off the back of a record-breaking victory over Leicester Tigers in the final pool stage match that went down as one of the best ever Weegie wins. With a two month buildup and an easily accessible road trip to Barnet the Warrior Nation’s numbers kept on swelling until the club were bringing around 5,500 fans to the party.
The sun was shining. History was being made. Unfortunately the game didn’t live up to expectations though! Saracens were far and away the better team. It would have rankled at the Glasgow boys though that they didn’t really show what the club are truly capable of. Hopefully this is a thought that can bring the very best out of the side that takes to the field for the 2018/19 quarter-final and the team selected can bring the true Warriors’ nature to proceedings.
Sunshine on Scotstoun
2018/19 Champions Cup Round 1
14 October 2018 at Scotstoun Stadium (report)
Glasgow Warriors 3
Penalties: Adam Hastings
Tries: Michael Rhodes
Conversions: Owen Farrell
Penalties: Owen Farrell (2)
This game was probably the closest the Warriors have come to matching the brutal physicality that Saracens can deploy. As the scoreboard showed though, even that wasn’t enough to get Glasgow over the line to that longed for win against their English opponents.
There was maybe an element of getting a bit too caught up in the arm wrestle and straying from the Warriors’ own strengths. This was the first time during the Renniessance that the club had been held tryless – although they did come very close on occasions! There’s still a lot to be taken from going toe to toe with one of Europe’s elite and Dave Rennie’s men will be well aware of the exceptionally high standard they will need to reach if they want to be in contention for a victory.
All(ianz) be Back
2018/19 Champions Cup Round 6
19 January 2019 at Allianz Park (report)
Tries: Ben Spencer, Vincent Koch, Billy Vunipola, Maro Itoje, Will Skelton
Conversions: Ben Spencer (3), Alex Lozowski (2)
Penalties: Ben Spencer
Glasgow Warriors 19
Tries: Tommy Seymour, Ali Price, Ryan Wilson
Conversions: Adam Hastings (2)
The outcome of Glasgow’s second visit to Allianz Park had been rendered rather moot – on the Warriors’ side at least. Edinburgh’s win over Montpellier the night before had guaranteed that, for the first time ever, both Scottish sides would be in the draw for the knockout stages of the European Cup. Undoubtedly the Weegies that headed through to Murrayfield to cheer on their oldest rivals were the deciding factor in that one…
As round 6 matches go this one was an entertaining affair. Back and forth between the two teams for the first half and a chunk of the second before Sarries’ power (and desire to grab one of the top 2 seedings) saw them pull away. There were hints in Glasgow’s attack of what they might need to do to really pressure the home side’s defence. Keeping those big carriers at arms length – or even better away from the ball completely – will be something that will have exercised the minds of the Warriors’ brains trust for the past 10 weeks.