Ulster the “Man City” of the Magners…

Hmm – Mr Humphreys -“We believe we’ve recruited very well this year and I believe this is the best Ulster squad that’s been assembled.” – that’s confidence for you.
Meanwhile the Mr Henson saga is now getting boring – Last chance salon Gavin if you want to play in a World Cup.
This year retains the play-off system but adds 2 Italian teams which could congest things somewhat in a World Cup year with many international demands:
Here’s the League website and here’s the fixtures. Cracking opener at Ravenhill on Friday as Ulster take on Ospreys (or should that be Man City v Real Madrid…). Enjoy the season.
Update – the Western Mail’s view on Ulster’s ambitions. Quote:
“The Magners League will be seen as a vital piece in their grandiose plans for world domination over the next few seasons”
Funny.

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  • Mrazik

    I hope Ulster aren’t setting themselves up for a fall. Was at both home Ulster friendlies against English opposition and Ulster played a much weakened team and unsurprisingly lost against Bath and just about beat leads. They also played a second string at Harlequins (which they lost). All three English sides played their best selection so it will be interesting to see which strategy works when the real season begins.I reckon there’ll be no silverware this season at Ulster but who knows about next…

  • Mick Fealty

    @GerGilroy’s just asked on Twitter, [if Ulster is Man City], where’s the money coming from…

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    It may be that Munster are finally on the wane looking distinctly out of puff at the end of the season against Biarritz and with Leinster also looking as if perhaps their best days may be behing them it would excellent timing if Ulster could start to threaten in Europe.

    It is all (or mostly) about Europe and the Magners is treated as very much the place where new players are tested, young ones developed and internationlas get some practice in before the Heineken cup.

    Ospreys may have won the Magners last year but it was a hugely disappointing year for them not to have made an impression in the HC and failure this year again (where they will need to outperform Munster in 2 matches) and it may well be curtains for their Australian coach.

    Presumably none of the Irish teams will play their internationlas until the week before HC opening round and the Magner’s for all the entertainment value it may offer still has some way to go before it can considered a proper competition.

    p.s. Dewi £10 says Munster finish above Ospreys in the HC group?

  • Dewi

    Mick – the Water Board?
    Sammy – sure – post every other week?

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    lol, yes that was a funny article. We’ll certainly have one of the best packs in Europe and one of the best scrum halves but the rest of the backline are pretty ordinary. Hopefully we challenge for top 4 in the magners and maybe a HC QF spot but it’s asking a lot from what’s a predominently very young and inexperienced side.

    Not sure when the Irish lads are back – Best and Ferris missed the summer tour so they should be available for ulster next week. Trimble out till October I think, and like I said, not sure when Court, Touhy, Wallace and Henry can return. We can probably cope without the forwards but without Trimble and Wallace, the backline is pretty dead.

  • Mrazik

    What about new boy D’Arcy and Danielli?

  • sammymehaffey

    D’Arcy was impressive but ‘we will have to teach him to kick’ quote!

  • ulstergeordie

    Challenge for 4th place and qualify for the knock out stages of the Heineken Cup? Blimey, if we even came close to this it would be the greatest season in a good few years!

    I am hopeful for the season ahead and am very much looking forward to going to Ravenhill on Friday evening. We have made some good signings, but it could all be in vain if BJ Botha leaves. He has already said that he will go if we don’t qualify for the knock stages of the Heineken.

    Only time will tell, there will be pressure of BMcL this season and if we don’t perform well i think he may walk.

    Stand up!!!

  • Dewi

    Updated.

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    D’Arcy looked okay but lightweight. Danielli crocked for a few more weeks I believe. BJ has been a sensation since his arrival and will be a massive loss. Hopefully, we can keep him until the end of the season.

    Challenging for 4th place shouldn;t be too difficult to achieve, but actually making the top 4 is a different story lol. On paper, we have a reasonable HC group and should push Biarritz hard. The backline, with 10 and 15 are big concerns but we’ll see…

  • militant mike

    Roll on friday night – and maybe this year there might be Cheerleaders? As Martin L.King said – dream on mate.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Ulster looked impressive in patches but will surely improve further as players settle in – and it is just as well as the quarefellahs from Connacht are also pushing on.

    Having seen Biarritz now a few times, they do not look world beaters so Ulster must have a realistic chance of at least making the quarters in the HC.