Today it became official that Gregor Townsend will replace Sean Lineen as Glasgow Warriors head coach next season, with Lineen being put in charge of player recruitment for the SRU. This one shook many people. The timing was poor.
If you look at the Sky Sports page for this final weekend of pool action, you’ll notice that in all the pools you can watch a choice of either final match on the main channel or the red button.
As Edinburgh and Glasgow go searching for success in the Heineken Cup this weekend it is important to understand that both teams must go to the extremes of their outlay if they are to keep their European fate in their own hands. They have pulled off some fantastic results, but as the old adage goes “one swallow does not make a summer”.
The deciding 1872 Cup game. The atmosphere was charged, even if some heads were sore. It was dark, but the fans expected more fire. Of course those expectations were founded on the belief that Glasgow had named a team as strong as they could whilst Edinburgh, with one eye on future fixtures in the Heineken Cup and the next RaboDirect game against an Ulster team that hammered Munster a few days ago, had set out to play their second string from the start. What happened in this game, though, was something short of incendiary.
Glasgow are trying to cultivate a party atmosphere ahead of the deciding 1872 Cup fixture. On New Year’s Day there will be a George Square party, situated at the Winter Cafe Bar, and good vibes will be pumped out through player appearances (before 4pm), tunes and a wee swally.
You’ll have gotten up today and sat down at your breakfast table, poured some juice, spread over some slightly charred toast and opened your paper. Looked at the sports section. You’ll see that Edinburgh drew with Glasgow at home 23-23. You’ll see that the attendance was 13,240. You’ll smile and, like Scott Johnson, you’ll think, “Wow! Scottish rugby looks like it’s going well.”
On Monday afternoon the peace will be broken and two packs will crumple into each other. At the crush of the scrummage both Edinburgh and Glasgow will be fighting to gain as many inches of ground as possible. One man will be delighted whatever the outcome is. With a burst of glee Scotland’s scrum coach Massimo Cuttita tells me “there will be fireworks alright!”