Select Edition

Northern Northern
Southern Southern
World World

The biggest difference noticed by Saracens since Premiership return

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by PA)

Trending on RugbyPass

More News More News

Saracens boss Mark McCall has highlighted what he believes is the main difference in the Premiership now that the London club is back in the top flight following their one-season stay in the Championship for repeated salary cap breaches. The club was crowned champions four times in five seasons before falling foul of the English rugby authorities.   


They have since bounced back, following up their Championship title victory last June with a return to the Premiership that was accompanied by the bookies making them favourites to be crowned 2021/22 champions. 

So far the indications are that bookies could ultimately be proven correct. Saracens have won three of their four games to leave them lurking in third place heading into this weekend’s round six fixture at home to Wasps on Sunday. 

Video Spacer

Chris Robshaw guests on the latest RugbyPass Offload
Video Spacer
Chris Robshaw guests on the latest RugbyPass Offload

Their most recent victory was last Sunday’s 71-17 hammering of Bath at The Rec. However, serial trophy winner McCall has claimed despite this particular lop-sided result that the Premiership title which Saracens are now competing for is very different from the top flight seasons they had known prior to their off-field demotion.  

“A couple of years ago I would have looked at the fixture list and probably been able to predict pretty much who would have beaten who and I don’t think you can do that as comfortably now,” he reckoned. 

“There have been a lot of games that have gone down to the last couple of minutes, the last ten minutes, and that is really healthy for the competition. There seem to be more teams who can beat each other on their day and at this stage who knows is going to be top eight, who knows who is going to be top four and that is really healthy.”


In the 30 matches played prior to this weekend’s round six, two finished in draws while another 15 resulted in the losing team coming away with a bonus point for only getting defeated by seven points or less. McCall’s greater competitiveness perspective is shared by London Irish boss Declan Kidney.

His team is currently on an eleven-match winless run stretching back to last March but they have drawn two and also taken two losing bonus points from their five matches this term, results that add to the belief that the Premiership is enjoying a greater intensity compared to other years. “When you work in a situation you are supposed to talk it up, but it is a good league and each week presents a different challenge,” reasoned Kidney.

“Exeter are a bit different to Gloucester who are quite different to Leicester and there are no easy matches. They are all great challenges, each one on its own, and that is what makes it such a good league. The fact that any team can beat any team on any given day is what makes it so competitive and that is what makes it so enthralling for people to watch.” 



Join free and tell us what you really think!

Join Free
TRENDING 'He's lost his international place for the first time in a long time' McCall backs Daly to win back RWC spot