Saracens aim to prevail over Clermont power in Champions Cup final

Lola the sheep dog- dressed as a Lion- sits as the Lions team prepare for a team

REUTERS Lola the sheep dog- dressed as a Lion- sits as the Lions team prepare for a team

Man of the match was the power-running Billy Vunipola but it was a pure team effort from Saracens, every one of them a vital part of the superbly drilled machine that simply wears down the opposition.

"I think they are significantly better than Racing 92 were past year - although they did incredibly well to reach the Champions Cup final and then go on to win the Top 14".

At the end of the half Camille Lopez went into a ruck and ended up with a bloodied nose and a loose pass gave Jackson Wray the chance to counter attack, a knock on inside the Clermont 22 halted Saracens and Nigel Owens brought a close to the half; Clermont trailing 12-7 at the break.

Saracens 28 (Chris Ashton, George Kruis, Alex Goode tries; Owen Farrell 2 conversions, 3 penalties), Clermont Auvergne 17 (Remi Lamerat, Nick Abendanon tries; Morgan Parra 2 conversions, penalty).

Clermont were fearless, inventive and tenacious and still they were lucky to be just one point adrift as this tense match moved into the final quarter. However, full-back Goode's touchdown seven minutes from time ensured it was Saracens who retained their title. "Clermont being the sort of team they are, being clever around the 22 and slowing our ball down - if we managed to generate quick ball in those times, it could have been risky".

Palestinian mass hunger strike takes dramatic turn
Israel's prison service have not commented on the matter, however officials previously rejected the idea of negotiations. Sabbagh's hope is that the plight of the prisoners moves the worldwide community to put legal pressure on Israel.

Mark McCall's side have not had an ideal build-up to the fixture withsix of their squad called up to the British and Irish Lions' 'messy Monday' just days before the match.

Clermont, who were the last team to beat them in this competition back in the 2015 semi-finals, have now lost all three of their final appearences including the 2013 showpiece.

Despite weathering the storm, Clermont did strike back.

Farrell kicked Saracens further ahead with a penalty but Clermont struck back instantly.

Clermont desperately needed a foothold in the game and they have too much class in their ranks not to find a response.

Manchester United agree summer transfer with Real Madrid's James Rodriguez
The report also indicates that the deal will only go ahead on the condition Wayne Rooney leaves the club in the summer. And when the transfer window eventually opens in June, he will have no shortage of suitors vying for his signature.

That set up a tense final quarter-hour but it was Saracens who emerged on top as Goode got the decisive score, making the most of Marcelo Bosch's decoy run to speed over in the corner.

It's relentless. As a winger, I felt a lot of the time that I was under pressure.

Scott Spedding started it from his own line, Fritz Lee and Peceli Yato took it on at pace and Nick Abendanon cruised over for a converted score.

But Clermont finally cracked and Goode got the try his performance deserved as he glided through a gap to confirm that Saracens are indeed the best club side in Europe. "We have an understanding of how they play, but it was good to speak to him about certain aspects and have a deeper understanding. But we have never spoken in terms of how great a legacy we want to create".

A try scorer and try maker in the semi-final win over Leinster Rugby, Strettle is still included in the Saracens team "WhatsApp" group.

Nadal crushes Djokovic to reach Madrid tennis final
And Nadal was forced to save a break point in the final game with a drop shot Djokovic couldn't get back over the net. Rafa had lost seving straight matches and 15 straight sets to Djokovic since the 2014 French Open final.

"After they scored that unbelievable 100-metre try we had to show our experience and resilience, and I'm pleased with the way we went after them for that last 20 minutes", he said. "We still have a lot of work to do before I feel comfortable saying we're a great team".

Latest News