Austin Healey has claimed that Leinster 40-7 destruction of Northampton proves that the Heineken Cup is unfair to the English teams.
In essence, the ex-Leicester and England utility back and current BT Sport pundit argued in the Daily Telegraph that the heavy toll the Aviva Premiership places on players makes it impossible for them to compete with the well-rested players in the Irish provinces.
On one side, you had the Saints, for whom the lion's share of their top players have been competing, week in and week out, at the highest domestic and international level since the beginning of September. Many of them might not have had a full pre season.
On the other side, you had a team, for whom its leading lights are fresh and raring to go after a relatively low-key start to their domestic season.
With no straight shoot-out between the teams in the Rabo Direct Pro 12, to see who does and subsequently, does not, qualify for the Heineken Cup, the Irish teams, in particular, are able to pick and choose when their players play....
A lot of the concern is based on success and freshness. What the Heineken Cup is doing at the minute, is not only giving the Irish a huge opportunity in terms of development and growth, but hampering the player development in England. The teams in Scotland and Wales are suffering in comparison to the Irish because their squad sizes are smaller.
Another example of the Irish and English media disagreeing here. The Irish media has drawn a different conclusion from the game in question. Namely that Leinster are much better than Northampton. Austin appears to discount this possibility. Though he does have some points to make here.