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Away form can keep Saracens’ Heineken Cup dream alive in Toulouse

| 10.01.2014

Saracens face a must win Heineken Cup clash against a Toulouse side who have only lost once all season at the Stade Ernest-Wallon.

With both sides locked at the top of Pool 3 on 15 points, Saracens know they must upset all the odds in south west France or face an early exit from European rugby’s premier club competition.

The blip against Connacht apart, Toulouse rarely disappoint their home fans and a 16-17 victory over the English club at Wembley in October has seen them made clear favourites for victory at 1/2 with Ladbrokes.

While many clubs may be daunted by the trip to Toulouse, Saracens, who are top of the Aviva Premiership, have cause for optimism having picked up 12 victories from 14 games in all competitions this campaign.

And the Toulouse coach, Guy Novès, who has been known for exaggerations in the past, is wary of the threat posed by Sarries, describing them as “The All Blacks of Europe.”

The English club are out for revenge against Novès’ charges following their Wembley defeat and with crucial victories on the road against Harlequins and Gloucester, they know they have the ability away from Allianz Park to beat anyone on their day.

Also, Mark McCall’s side are the leading tryscorers in the tournament so far and they have racked up the most points – 142 – in the four previous rounds of European Cup rugby.

There is no doubt the Men in Black are in confident mood ahead of their toughest test of the season but with no major disruption to the side that beat Gloucester last weekend – Chris Wyles replaces Marcelo Bosch at centre – Saracens could be the value pick at 13/8 pick to cause a major surprise in Toulouse’s backyard.

Victory would make McCall’s men major contenders for Heineken Cup glory and the price of 9/1 for Steve Borthwick’s troops to lift the trophy would disappear should they come out on top against the four-time champions.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Oliver Yew