Glasgow Warriors v Northampton Saints preview: Warriors beging European campaign in front of sell-out crowd
Northampton travels north of the border to take on Glasgow in the European Champions Cup on Saturday: 17:15 kick-off
Warriors stick with the same starting XV that was due to kick off their European campaign last weekend prior to their postponement
Saints boss Jim Mallinder has made three changes
The game is a complete sell-out with a capacity crowd of 6,800 expected
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend has stuck with the exact same 23-man squad for this afternoon’s European Championship opener with Northampton Saints at Scotstoun Stadium.
The Scotsman has stuck with the same players and same starting XC who were set to take to the field against Racing 92 last Saturday prior to the games postponement following the attacks in Paris.
Their European opener is set to be played in front of a sell-out 6,800 crowd at Scotstoun.
Georgia hooker Shalva Mamukashvili has been named amongst the replacements and could potentially make his debut for the club, with boss Townsend keen for Glasgow to get their campaign underway.
We’re really looking forward to kicking off our European campaign against Northampton Saints tomorrow evening,” he said.
“Northampton were impressive in their win away to the Scarlets last weekend and will be traveling with confidence, but we’re excited about playing at home in front of a capacity crowd, who will help create another big European night at Scotstoun.
“We’ve had continuity with the team selection this week and it’ll be good test against one of the top teams in England.”
Meanwhile, Northampton make three changes after their opening 15-11 win over Scarlets.
Wing Ahsee Tuala, fly-half Stephen Myler and second row Michael Paterson will start for the English Premiership outfit as they look to go clear at the top of the pool by making it back-to-back wins.
There is also a return to the matchday squad for back-row Jon Fisher, while Jamie Elliott joins the replacements.
Saints have made a very poor start to the season and are looking a shadow of the side that won the Premiership two seasons ago. They snuck past Scarlets in the opening round but looked anything but comfortable. Glasgow should be able to overcome the visitors unless they make a monumental improvement. Glasgow by 7.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Glasgow Warriors: Stuart Hogg
Representing Scotland at U18, U19, U20 and senior level, fullback Hogg brings a lot to this Glasgow side in terms of international experience and skill. His incredible speed, strong carrying and ability to take the ball out of the air like very few can in the world makes him crucial and potentially a game changer if the clash is not going the Warriors way.
Northampton: Ben Foden
Northampton Saints’ Ben Foden is a versatile and exciting talent. ALthough he has had some serious injruy problems he seems to be slowly but surely edging back towards his best with his electric pace and ability to wrong foot a defender with elusive running skills proving deadlyin their recent Premiership clash against Newcastle.
Glasgow: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Peter Horne, 11 Sean Lamont, 10 Finn Russell, 9 Mike Blair, 8 Josh Strauss, 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Rob Harley, 5 Jonny Gray, 4 Leone Nakarawa, 3 Sila Puafisi, 2 Pat MacArthur, 1 Ryan Grant.
Replacements: 16 Shalva Mamukashvili, 17 Gordon Reid, 18 Zander Fagerson, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 Ryan Wilson, 21 Grayson Hart, 22 Richie Vernon, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro.
Northampton: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Ahsee Tuala, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson (c), 8 Sam Dickinson, 7 Tom Wood, 6 Jamie Gibson, 5 Christian Day, 4 Michael Paterson, 3 Paul Hill, 2 Mikey Haywood, 1 Alex Waller.
Replacements: 16 Matti Williams, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Paul Hill, 19 Jon Fisher, 20 Teimana Harrison, 21 Kahn Fotuali’I, 22 Jj Hanrahan, 23 Jamie Elliott.
Date: Saturday, November 21
Venue: Scotstoun Stadium
Kick-off: 17:15 GMT
Referee: Pascal Gauzère (France)
Assistant Referees: Maxime Chalon (France), Jean-Luc Rebollal (France)
TMO: Gilles Cogne (France)