TOP European rugby returns to Milton Keynes this Saturday as Northampton Saints take on Munster at stadium:mk.
The sell-out Heineken Cup game is the third time the Saints will play at the home of MK Dons in the last 12 months, and the game is proving just as popular with more than 21,000 tickets sold well in advance of kick-off.
While Saints can’t qualify for the next round of Europe’s premier trophy with a win over already-qualified Munster, there is still a lot to play for with a place in the Amlin Challenge Cup quarter finals at stake for the side who finishes second in the Pool 1 table, with Welsh side Scarlets Saints’ rivals for that runners-up spot.
Should Saints come away with a bonus point win against Munster then they will qualify. Win without a bonus point, or lose to the men from Limerick, and all eyes will quickly turn to the result from Scarlets’ trip to Castres.
Last season Saints made it to the final of the Heineken Cup, having played both their quarter and semi finals in Milton Keynes. In April they saw off Ulster 23-13 before hammering Perpignan 23-7 in May to reach the final. However, Leinster were too good on the day and recorded a 33-22 win at the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff.
Three defeats from five games this year means Saints’ run in the Cup comes to an end this Saturday regardless of the result, but they will still be determined to end on a high and get revenge for their 23-21 loss to Munster in Ireland in November.
And in case you’re interested, X-Factor winner Alexandra Burke will perform on the pitch before the 6pm kick-off.