Sale Director of Rugby Steve Diamond was left frustrated by both his team and the referee’s performance in Saturday’s narrow European loss to Saracens.
The loss effectively ended any hopes the Sharks had of advancing out of Pool One and Diamond was left to rue another close defeat as his team were unable to convert late pressure into points, going down 19-15 on home soil.
“We could have won in the last five minutes and we probably lacked a bit of composure,” said Diamond.
“We were hammering at their line, getting penalty after penalty and probably in the Premiership they would have got a yellow card, but it wasn’t to be.
“They’re a good side and they pushed the boundaries of offside quite a lot. There was probably a bit of inexperience from the referee coming out of the Celtic League by not being used to how streetwise teams like Saracens are.
“It’s difficult to be pleased with a performance like that in the ‘Group of Death’ as it’s called. We can put up a good show but being close isn’t good enough at this moment in time and we should have won the game in our eyes.”