The streets of South Dublin were awash with the red of Munster this afternoon as supporters eagerly awaited their Champions Cup clash with defending champions, Saracens. They were under no illusions, to secure victory would require a monstrous performance from the 15 men on the pitch.
The atmosphere was raucous as the referee blew the whistle to get the game underway. So much so in fact that Jerry Flannery - working with BT Sports - said "I can't really hear you" as songs rang out around the national stadium.
What was required was a brave performance with very little errors. What transpired was anything but. The Saracens defence was seemingly impregnable as each Munster attack failed to break it down, yet there was a glimmer of hope as Justin Wray was sent to the sin bin but the provincial side failed to capitalise upon the opportunity.
Munster left the pitch with every chance of going through but within 15 minutes later all hope had faded as Maku Fanipola scored the first try of the game. All the while Owen Farrell put each kick over the bar, while Tyler Bleyendaal had a contrasting performance.
Chris Wyles put the nail in the coffin as broke down the wing and was fortunate to gather the ball as he collides with Zebo.
Munster got a try in the dying moments which was nothing but a mere consolation.
The Irish side's journey in Europe has come to an end, while Saracens look quite likely to lift the trophy for the second consecutive season.
Final score: Munster 10-26 Saracens.
— Reardens (@Reardenscork) April 22, 2017
Munster should be 10 points up based on possession, but bar the first 10 mins they've never even looked like creating a chance.
— Dan (@mufc_dan87) April 22, 2017
I hate to say it because I rate him so much and I really like him but Bleyendaal has cost munster a good few points today
— Seán O'Sullivan 🇮🇪 (@sean_osull00) April 22, 2017
Resorting to a drop goal attempt there shows the level of Munster's desperation and frustration.
— al_mac* (@_al_mac) April 22, 2017
Saracens will defend their European title at Murrayfield. As for Munster, Pro12 silverware in their sights and clearly a team in ascendancy.
— Alex Shaw (@alexshawsport) April 22, 2017