Clermont

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Alex Goode of Saracens dives to score his team’s third try during the European Rugby Champions Cup Final between ASM Clermont Auvergne and Saracens at Murrayfield Stadium. Photo: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Everyone talks about winning being a habit. In rugby it is more complicated than that: nothing comes easy and conquering Everest always has to be done(...)

Saracens’ head coach Mark McCall: his side attempt to become the first English side since Leicester in 2002 to successfully defend the title. Photograph:  Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Preview: Clermont Auvergne v Saracens, Murrayfield, 5pm Live on TV: Sky Sports 3, BT Sport 2 It is clear Chris Ashton means business when scoring t(...)

Leinster’s Johnny Sexton: “The first 15, it cost us really, didn’t it?” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Johnny Sexton took this semi-final defeat on the chin, as he does, and sportingly admitted Clermont were the better team after wishing them well in th(...)

Clermont’s Davit Zirakashvili lifts Leinster’s Devin Toner in Sunday’s European Rugby Champions Cup semi-final in Lyon. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

A belter of an occasion, and a cracking game to match, in which Leinster contributed handsomely by the daring way they way twice threatened to turn ye(...)

 Morgan Parra:  playing as well as he ever has and steers the ship for  Clermont Auvergne. Photograph: Photograph:  David Rogers/Getty Images

By now, the Leinster and Munster coaches will have shown their players ways in which to navigate around Clermont and Saracens. The onus isn’t on the (...)

Munster celebrate as CJ Stander scores a try against Toulouse in Saturday’s European  Champions Cup quarter-final at Thomond Park, Limerick.  Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

The cream riseth to the top, and all that. In time-honoured fashion, it gets harder now, and the Irish provinces will both be underdogs when Munster h(...)

 Clermont’s Damien Penaud scores a late try to wrap up victory over Toulon. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Clermont Auvergne 29 Toulon 9 Damien Penaud’s late try capped a powerful second-half display as Clermont dismissed Toulon to set up a Champions Cup s(...)

Donegal captain Michael Murphy is temporarily swapping Gaelic football for rugby with Top 14 team Clermont Auvergne as part of The Toughest Trade. Photograph: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile.

Michael Murphy was a teenager in 2005 when Tana Umaga, Conrad Smith and the late Jerry Collins visited Letterkenny RFC to pay homage to the original A(...)

 Jack Carty celebrates the  winning  conversion with his team-mates after Connacht’s last-gasp victory over Wasps at the Sportsground. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

In stark contrast to this point last season when only Ulster still harboured hopes of reaching the knock-out stages of the European Champions Cup, al(...)

Leinster’s Jonathan Sexton is tackled by Munster’s Rory Scannell at the Aviva Stadium earlier this month. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Time was when nothing whetted the appetite quite like the return of what we knew and loved as the Heineken Cup. In its stead, the European Champions(...)

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