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22nd May 2023

Leinster fans call Liveline to complain about Munster not supporting them

Simon Kelly

Leinster Liveline

Once it hits Liveline, there’s no stopping it.

Ronan O’Gara and his La Rochelle side broke Leinster hearts on Saturday after the French team came out victorious in the Heineken Cup final.

Completing a spirited comeback from being 17-0 down to the Irish side after just 12 minutes, La Rochelle were eventually crowned champions in a heated match, which spilled into the tunnels at full-time.

However, it seems there were also issues in the stands of the Aviva, as reports flooded in about Munster fans cheering on O’Gara’s side, dressed in La Rochelle gear. The issue reached national concern levels when Liveline committed a whole show to it this weekend.

“When I rang this morning I was very disappointed to hear but not surprised that there were Munster supporters shouting for La Rochelle at the game,” said one caller.

Liveline host Colm Ó Mongáin said that he came across an “irate Leinster fan” at a different sporting event who was furious at the “pocket of Munster fans dressed in hats and scarves and La Rochelle gear,” adding that the fan was “incensed.”

Jimmy from Thurles, who called into the show, was one of the offenders in question.

“It wasn’t about the Irish or the French or anything like that,” he said. “I just shouted for Ronan O’Gara’s team and his management career.

“I’m not at all [anti-Leinster]… You must remember what he has done there, he’s really pulled it out of the ditch for them.”

A lot of Munster based callers pointed to the fact that it was more pro-O’Gara support rather than anti-Leinster.

However, some disagreed.

“On numerous occasions I’ve heard Munster supporters supporting anybody but Leinster going back to the Heineken Cup final over in Edinburgh when Munster were at their height,” said one fan.

“A lot of lads had bought their tickets in the hope that Munster would be in the final but as it transpired it was Leinster. But they were supporting Leicester at the match.

“Over the last couple of years, whether it be at the match or watching at the pub, you’d always have Munster supporters and even at the weekend I was at the final and there was Munster supporters supporting La Rochelle.”

Another caller suggested that only “true rugby supporters” were cheering on Leinster “because they could see the bigger strategic thing of Irish rugby and its future and the world cup coming up rather than the narrow provincial thing of Leinster vs Munster.”

A heated exchange at the Aviva.

Reports came out after the match on Saturday that an incident took place between the two teams in the tunnel following the final whistle.

Leinster captain Johnny Sexton and La Rochelle lock Will Sexton were reportedly involved as players and coaches tried to funnel others into the respective changing rooms.

According to reports, the incident was sparked by Leinster’s contact coach, former back-row Sean O’Brien, who stood outside the referee’s room adjacent to the Leinster changing room.

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