We take a look at the 10 best rugby clubs from around the world right now and rank them based on recent form;
The men from Munster may not have achieved the same success that their predecessors became famed for in recent seasons, but there’s no doubting that they’re still right up there with the best of them. No team will relish a visit to their fortress at Thomond Park where some of the best fans in the world make it one of the toughest places to play in rugby.
The Londoners will feel hard done by after last season ultimately ended in disappointment despite them reaching two major finals. At times Saracens were sublime however they looked out on their feet by the final few games of the season. If they can claim some silverware this year there’s no doubting they can move up these rankings.
It may have been a few years since the Natal Sharks seriously challenged for the Supr Rugby title, however this year has been one of their best. They took an early lead in the Super Rugby table as their powerful pack dominated in the opening rounds. If they can push on next year they could well find themselves in the final once again.
They don’t come much more successful than Leinster, particularly in the Northern Hemisphere. Packed full of Irish internationals, there aren’t too many teams who push Leinster around when they play their full strength team. The loss of BOD will be keenly felt but there’s plenty more talent in the squad to help them challenge this year.
Last season was a complete disaster by Les Rouge et Noir’s extraordinarily high standards as they failed to live up to their previous standards. Despite this, nobody is writing them off this year as a squad packed full of international talent once again prepares it’s charge on the Top 14 and European Cup.
5. Northampton Saints
Last season was nothing sort of sensational for Northampton as they claimed a Premiership and Amlin Cup title in style. Whilst their recruitment has been minimal this year they’ve kept together an exciting squad and introduced some talented young players once again and have started the season in the same fashion with which they ended the last one.
It would be easy to argue for the Chiefs to be appearing even higher up this list given their Super Rugby double during their 2012&13 campaigns. Unfortunately a slow start to the 2014 season ultimately cost them in the end as they struggled to make their way into the play-offs and lost out in their battle to retain their title.
By their usual standards the Crusaders have had a barren period as the men from Waikato upstaged them. Whilst they may have lost out in this season’s Super Rugby final, it was by the tiniest of margins. Given the number of All Blacks in their squad however expect them to be pushing for honours once again next year.
The Waratahs have finally dropped their ‘nearly’ tag as they battled to a maiden Super Rugby title this season after an outstanding season. Possessing what might possibly be the most potent backline in world rugby, the Tahs look like they will be the team to beat next year as they look to retain their title.
I’m sure there will be plenty of debate on this one but it’s hard to argue with a Top 14 and two Heineken Cup titles in the space of two years. Probably the most star studded side in world rugby right now Toulon are becoming the dominant force in European rugby and will be hoping to make it three from three in Europe this season.
Which club do you think are the best in the world right now?