Leinster can become the greatest side in the history of the Heineken Cup if they defeat Ulster at Twickenham this Saturday, according to Sky Sports commentator Stuart Barnes.
Barnes, along with Paul Wallace, Tyrone Howe and Dewi Morris, were in Dublin on Monday morning to discuss the forthcoming all Ireland Heineken Cup final and Barnes is in no doubt that should Leinster win on Saturday their place at the top of the European rugby mountain is assured.
“There isn’t even a debate here. If Leinster win on Saturday they will become, without doubt, the greatest team in the history of the Heineken Cup.
“Never mind about retaining the title. This could be their third victory in four years, couple that with the manner and the style that they have played in over the last couple of seasons it isn’t open to question.
“You could argue that Toulouse have four trophies and they are the greatest club in the Heineken Cup, but for a core of players that Leinster have they are the greatest. I defy anyone to come up with another team to compare with Leinster.”
Tyrone Howe agrees with Barnes and also highlights the rapid evolution that has swept Leinster to such unprecedented success in the last five years.
“If you had said five years ago that Leinster could become the greatest team in the history of the Heineken Cup people would have thought you were barking mad.
“Munster were the kingpins of European rugby for so long and it’s to Leinster’s credit that they are where they are at the moment, which is the best team in Europe.”
Along with Barnes and Howe, Paul Wallace believes that Leinster are the best side in Europe at the moment and Wallace believes that one person deserves huge credit for the recent success of the Irish province.
“I think Leo Cullen deserves a lot of praise. His leadership, allied to that of Brian O’Driscoll has just been superb. I think when Leo and Shane Jennings came back from Leicester they brought an awful lot back with them.
“They have taken a lot of that Leicester mentality and brought it into Leinster. Of all the guys that I have played with Leo is up there with some of the smartest rugby brains that I have ever played with.”
Saturday is Day of Destiny on Sky Sports, featuring over 40 hours of live sport in HD in one day,including the Heineken Cup final live on Sky Sports 3 HD and Sky 3D from 16.30