Glasgow Warriors embrace Saracens challenge, says McFarland

Glasgow Warriors celebrate
Glasgow Warriors beat Connacht on Saturday

Forwards coach Dan McFarland says Glasgow Warriors are "not afraid" as they prepare to face defending European champions Saracens.

Warriors take part in their first Champions Cup quarter-final at Allianz Park on Sunday.

"They're just one step ahead of most of the teams, if not all the teams, in their league and as a consequence we're going to need to be one step ahead.

"That challenge is a fantastic one but not a daunting one," said McFarland.

"It's certainly the most significant game since I've been here. It's a quarter-final in Europe, playing probably the best team in Europe.

"Challenging is the way I'd like to put it. Daunting sort of adds an element of fear. We're not afraid. It's a great challenge and we relish that challenge.

"Why wouldn't you want to play the best team in Europe? Why wouldn't you want to test yourself? As a coaching team, that's what we feel and I know the players are of the same mindset."

Dan McFarland
McFarland has urged Glasgow to be "on the money" at lineouts

McFarland highlighted driven mauls as one of Saracens' strengths but takes heart from some of Glasgow's performances this season.

"They played Bath at the weekend, they scored two driving maul tries," McFarland said.

"They're not out of the blue. They score the most driving maul tries in the Premiership. I think after this weekend, they had scored the most tries in the Premiership.

"That is a strength of their game, not just five metres from the try line but all over the park, it's the way they launch their play, it's the way that they attempt to earn penalties off the opposition.

"They try and do the same with their set piece, their scrum, which has traditionally been a strength of theirs. They're extremely good and efficient at things like lineout and lineout defence with some great athletes in there. For us, we've got to be on the money in those areas.

"We'd be confident as well because we faced Leicester already, we faced Racing and we faced Munster in the league - all three of whom are very strong in those areas.

"To have gone to Racing and to have gone to Leicester and put in winning performances certainly gives us confidence. This is another level up. I think playing Munster was another level up and I think playing Saracens is another level up as well."

Glasgow centre Nick Grigg added: "There's a buzz. History made, making the quarter-finals for the first time ever but we're not just wanting to stop there. We want to create even bigger history and go on to the final and win that.

"If we play well and everything goes to plan on the day, we can do it."

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