Michael Bradley: strong Ulster crowd won’t faze Edinburgh

Ulster fans have snapped up 30,000 tickets for their Heineken Cup semi final clash with a fortnight still to go but Edinburgh coach Michael Bradley says that a ‘home-town’ crowd will not be the deciding factor.

“You’re talking 12 international players, they’re used to playing away from home, they’re well used to hostile atmospheres,” he told SportsNewsIreland.

The province has already bought out over half of the Aviva Stadium’s capacity but with the semi final appearance being a first for Scottish rugby Bradley feels that Edinburgh will be well represented.

“On the balancing side of that Edinburgh Rugby will have a strong support. The Scots like coming to Ireland and there’s plenty of Scots in Ireland so it won’t be as hostile as you say.

“It shouldn’t be a major factor.”

Tickets only went on general sale this morning but 30,000 eager fans had already got theirs through season ticket holder priority sales and club networks with 10,000 sold within the first hour.

Bradley acknowledged the importance of a strong travelling support for the match and recalled the influence of the record crowd in Murrayfield for last weekend’s historic win over Toulouse.

“It is important that we do get enough supporters to the game because as we saw against Toulouse we had close on 40,000 Edinburgh rugby supporters versus 280 Toulouse supporters and it was a big factor.

“Hopefully on the day those Scots that do come will make enough noise to make it at least a 50/50 in terms of the crowd.”

Bradley was in Dublin ahead of Edinburgh’s RaboDirectPro 12 game with Leinster at the RDS this evening.

Click here to read the full preview of tonight’s game

SportsNewsIreland will have full coverage in the build up to all the Heineken Cup Semi final games.


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