Saracens to play semi-final in Ireland or France if they beat Glasgow, Wasps get 'home' draw against Clermont or Toulon

Jack de Menezes
The Independent
Saracens will have to win in either Dublin or Bordeaux to make the final if they see off Glasgow this weekend: Getty
Saracens will have to win in either Dublin or Bordeaux to make the final if they see off Glasgow this weekend: Getty

European champions Saracens face the daunting prospect of travelling to Ireland or France should they see off Glasgow Warriors in their Champions Cup quarter-final encounter on Sunday.

Sarries would meet the winner of this weekend’s Champions Cup quarter-final between heavyweights Munster and Toulouse.

However, the semi-final location draw looks much kinder for Premiership leaders Wasps, pitting them against either Clermont Auvergne or Toulon at Northampton’s Franklin’s Gardens and handing them something of a home advantage if they defeat Leinster.

Both semi-finals will be played on neutral venues, although given the nature of the six-nation tournament, one team will still have the advantage of playing in their home nation at least - a process decided by a pre-bracketed priority system that hands the advantage to teams drawn away from home in the quarter-finals.

The winner of Saracens vs Glasgow at Allianz Park will play either Munster or Toulouse, and should the Scottish side see off the defending champions, they will have home advantage in the semi-finals at BT Murrayfield regardless of their opposition, due to the fact that they are the highest-ranked away side out of those four teams.

Champions Cup semi-finals – 22/23 April

SF 1: if Clermont Auvergne v Leinster – Matmut Stadium de Gerland (Lyon)

SF 1: if Toulon v Leinster – Allianz Riviera Stadium (Nice)

SF 1: if Wasps v Clermont Auvergne – Franklin’s Gardens (Northampton)

SF 1: if Wasps v Toulon – Franklin’s Gardens (Northampton)

SF 2: if Munster v Saracens – Aviva Stadium (Dublin)

SF 2: if Toulouse v Saracens – Stade Chaban-Delmas (Bordeaux)

SF 2: if Glasgow Warriors v Munster – BT Murrayfield (Edinburgh)

SF 2: if Glasgow Warriors v Toulouse – BT Murrayfield (Edinburgh)

Similarly, should Toulouse make it through and wind up playing Saracens, they will have home advantage at the Stade Chaban-Delmas in Bordeaux. Should Saracens and Munster win, then the two teams will be off to the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, given that there are no away teams in the draw, and Munster would prevail courtesy of their better seeding in the quarter-finals.

In the other half of the draw, Wasps hold the key as the highest-ranked away club, and should they beat Leinster they will play at the home of Northampton Saints regardless of opposition. Should the Irish province beat Wasps and go on to face Toulon, then the French side would gain the advantage for playing away from home this weekend and would take the match to Nice’s shiny new Allianz Riviera Stadium. Finally, if Clermont beat Toulon and line up against Leinster, then the Matmut Stadium de Gerland in Lyon will host the semi-final clash.

The European Champions Cup semi-finals take place on the weekend of 21-23 April, with the final being held at BT Murrayfield on Saturday 13 May.

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