Sunday 15 September 2019

Cullen: We are still good enough to beat anyone in Europe

Leo Cullen
Leo Cullen
Cian Tracey

Cian Tracey

Leo Cullen insists that Leinster are good enough to beat any side in Europe, ahead of their crucial Champions Cup clash in Bath tomorrow.

After being humbled at home to Wasps last weekend, Leinster must win in the Rec to realistically keep alive their hopes of advancing from their pool but they are set to be without four players for the trip to England.

Sean O'Brien, Richardt Strauss and Mike McCarthy suffered concussion in the defeat to Wasps and look certain to miss out but Cullen believes that his side have enough quality to bounce back.

"Every week, we go out with a mindset to win. I would never set up a team to just go out and play and be competitive," Cullen said.

"We want to win every game we play. We think we're good enough to go out and win every game we play but it doesn't always happen.


"But we feel we're good enough to take on anyone in this competition. It's about putting a plan in place.

"I was under no illusions going in to this job that there were going to be some tough days. It's tough but I am fully committed to doing anything I can possibly do to make sure that the team is successful on the weekend."

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Jack Conan is facing up to 10 weeks on the sidelines after the number eight broke a bone in his foot in training this week and he requires surgery.

But in more positive news, Rhys Ruddock (wrist) is fit again while Rob Kearney (hamstring), Isa Nacewa (knee), Luke Fitzgerald (shoulder) and Ben Te'o (glute) should return to face Bath.

Meanwhile, the IRFU have announced the appointment of Peter Smyth as Leinster's academy manager. Smyth has previously represented Ireland and Leinster 'A' and coached St Mary's College to Ulster Bank League success in 2012 and has also guided Blackrock College to four Leinster Schools Senior Cup and two Junior Cup titles.

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