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Friday 13 December 2019

Cullen wants more from attack

Leo Cullen
Leo Cullen

If Leinster go on to win silverware this season, they will look back at the 10-minute spell before half-time in which their 14 men managed to repel wave after wave of Lyon attacks.

With Jordan Larmour in the bin, Leinster dug deep and showed the grittier side of their game. The celebrations that greeted the final turnover looked as if they had just scored a match-winning try.

Despite coming away from the home of the Top 14 leaders with a crucial victory, Leinster weren't all that satisfied with their performance.

They feel as if they could and should have killed off Lyon earlier, and that the French side were still in with a chance of taking a share of the spoils come the end-game, didn't sit well with Leo Cullen.

"I don't think any of our performances have been anywhere close to where I think we can get to," the Leinster coach insisted. "That's the thing that we are trying to focus on at the moment.

"The internationals' attitude has been really good from them coming back in. You can see they are all hungry.

"They are getting a little bit animated on the field as well, which is what we want to see. I think it's fantastic to see it.

"But as a group, we are still lacking a bit of proper cohesion. Thankfully, we have won the two European games but I don't think the performances have been quite where we would like them to be.

"We have got the job done and credit to the players, particularly against Lyon, being able to dig it out, because they have been going so well.

"We are more concerned about ourselves, it's about how we impose our game. Defensively, it was good.

"But from an attacking side, we are not going to continue to go through games where we have less than 50 per cent possession.

"We want to be able to control the game a little bit more and not be in this dogfight at the end where we are hanging in there.

"Lyon had an attacking set at the end, we looked a little bit vulnerable there. That was my impression of the game."

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