It was a game they could have and should have won.
Instead, Ulsterman Mark McCall oversees a Saracens side that holds a handy three-point lead in Pool One over the two-time winners of the Heineken Cup.
The London-based, South African-owned club also have a real sense of identity and are miles further down the road with a style of play. They are direct, purposeful and organised.
This encounter will go a long way towards killing Munster's ambitions for this season or, conversely, revitalising their dedication to Penney's new regime.
The Munster faithful have not been so faithful this season. The buzz around the arrival of a new hero in South African CJ Stander has been dampened by his injury. This is balanced out by the return of number eight James Coughlan from a groin problem.
Munster v Saracens, Thomond Park, tomorrow, 6.0 (Live Sky Sports)