Munster, bolstered by the return of some experienced players, will be all out to rain on Glasgow's parade on Friday as the Scots did a league 'double' over them last season.
MAGNERS LEAGUE: Friday, September 16
GLASGOW WARRIORS v MUNSTER, Hughenden, 7.30pm (live Setanta Sports Ireland)
Team News: Glasgow have made a total of five changes (one positional) to the side that lost to Llanelli last week for the visit of the Heineken Cup champions.
In the backs, winger Colin Shaw drops to the bench to make way for Hefin O'Hare, who swaps wins with Thom Evans. New signing Sean Marsden will make his Glasgow debut at outside centre in place of Graeme Morrison and stalwart scrum half Graeme Beveridge replaces his fellow international Sam Pinder, who joins the bench.
In the forwards, the one change comes in the back row where John Barclay replaces Donnie Macfadyen at openside flanker.
Munster welcome back their captain Anthony Foley as well as their other Irish players Mick O'Driscoll, Anthony Horgan, John Kelly and Alan Quinlan. They have also called on the services of former Munster and Leinster scrum half Brian O'Meara to alleviate an injury crisis at scrum half. O'Meara will take his place on the bench.
Glasgow: Francisco Leonelli; Hefin O'Hare, Sean Marsden, Andrew Henderson, Thom Evans; Dan Parks, Graeme Beveridge; Justin Va'a, Fergus Thomson, Euan Murray, Andy Newman, Alastair Kellock, Andrew Wilson, John Barclay, John Beattie.
Replacements: Eric Milligan, Kevin Tkachuk, Dan Turner, Stevie Swindall, Sam Pinder, Colin Gregor, Colin Shaw.
Munster: Shaun Payne; Ian Dowling, John Kelly, James Downey, Anthony Horgan; Jeremy Manning, Tomas O'Leary; Darragh Hurley, Frankie Sheahan, Federico Pucciariello, Mick O'Driscoll, Chris Wyatt, John O'Sullivan, Tim McGann, Anthony Foley (capt).
Replacements: Andy Kyriacou, Timmy Ryan, Donnacha Ryan, Alan Quinlan, Brian O'Meara, Eoghan Hickey, Mossie Lawlor.
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Touch Judges: Iain Heard, Ronnie Duma (both Scotland)
Coach Speak: Sean Lineen (Glasgow) - "The combination needs to be freshened up as last week it didn't work as well as we would have liked. There are a number of players pushing for places and on top of that, there are still guys who are coming back from injury so I really want to give these players a chance.
"It's a long season and we have a lot of competition within the squad, especially in the centre and in the back row where there are a lot of youngsters coming through. I'm looking forward to see how this line-up blends."
Declan Kidney (Munster) - "(With some experienced players coming back) I susppose we have to get the balance right now between being fair to the lads who did so well (against the Borders) and, given that it's a six day turnaround, freshening up the side for what is a huge game.
"Remember that we played them (Glasgow) twice last year and didn't manage to get a point so on their home patch they won't have any fears of us at all."
PREVIOUS LEAGUE MEETINGS:
October 2003 - Munster 26 Glasgow 10, Musgrave Park
March 2004 - Glasgow 12 Munster 37, Hughenden
October 2004 - Glasgow 26 Munster 28, Hughenden
February 2005 - Munster 25 Glasgow 19, Thomond Park
September 2005 - Glasgow 32 Munster 10, Hughenden
February 2006 - Munster 20 Glasgow 26, Thomond Park
- Glasgow have slipped to three straight defeats to Connacht, the Dragons and the Scarlets, and have not defeated an Irish side since getting the better of Munster (26-20) at Thomond Park last February
- Munster's recent away form is poor - they have lost their last three away games to the Ospreys, the Scarlets and the Blues, but won on their last visit to Scotland. Last April saw them secure a 41-25 win at the Borders
- Glasgow acheived a league 'double' over Munster for the first time last season. Colin Gregor was their hero in Limerick as he scored 21 points (a try, two conversions and four penalties) in the 26-20 triumph. The Warriors won despite leaking tries to Anthony Foley, Anthony Horgan and the now departed Stephen Keogh
- Former All Black Christian Cullen will hope to put his injury jinx behind him and rediscover the sort of form that saw him run in two tries against Glasgow at Hughenden in October 2004, however Munster's last visit to the Warriors' home ground saw thm concede four tries
- Out-half Dan Parks is Glasgow's current top scorer in the Magners League with 14 points in two appearances. Munster's young number 10 Jeremy Manning boasts 17 points after two games. Munster would be wise to limit Parks' shots at the posts as the Scottish international has been successful with his last six of seven kicking attempts. Manning has slotted over six out of nine kicks for a 66.67% success rate