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Kevin nose Ospreys will be a lot tougher

LEINSTER'S Kevin McLaughlin is not a man who spends too much time in front of the mirror.

Otherwise, he wouldn't have shown up at a Leinster press conference with a broken nose spread out across his face. Ouch!

"I got a bit of treatment from The Viking," he laughed, about the dangerously high elbow from Norwegian lock Erik Lund.

You could have forgiven McLaughlin & Co for feeling pleased with themselves from the 41-22 Amlin Challenge Cup semi-final bashing of Biarritz last Saturday.

But, coach Joe Schmidt is notorious for putting the good to one side and shining a bright light on the things that need to be corrected. And so.

"It's funny – just talking about Joe – we all kind of strutted into the video session this morning and he took the smiles off our faces with several imperfections from the performance," said McLaughlin.

"He'll always find something for us to tweak, and we know ourselves that we're going to come up against better teams."

The flanker was looking ahead to the final regular season contest in the PRO12 League against the Ospreys, in many ways Leinster's nemesis, at the RDS on Friday night.

"It's a huge game and we're looking at it as sort of a knockout because if the Ospreys don't win they're gone; if we don't win we're looking at possibly an away semi.

"So it's hugely important. The way we look at it is if we win on Friday we're at home for the rest of the season and that's a massive thing to be able to say," said McLaughlin.

It won't come as read against the Welsh club that has beaten Leinster in the league finals of 2010 and 2012, the latter at the same Dublin venue.

"Obviously, we're always looking to get our payback against them. We know we can beat them and, hopefully, we can do it on Friday."