Rugby Union

Alex Corbisiero targeting European glory for Northampton

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Northampton Saints prop Alex Corbisiero is targeting success in the new European Rugby Champions Cup this season, reports BBC Sport.

Saints won their first-ever Aviva Premiership title with a thrilling win over Saracens in May, earning them a spot in the revamped European tournament which was previously called the Heineken Cup.

Confidence

They were knocked out at the group stages of the competition last season but Corbisiero is confident they can do better this time around.

He told BBC Radio Northampton: "We've set the bar high. Backing the Premiership up will be a tough task.

"But it's the same thing with Europe, we want to aim one higher and go after that new competition.

"We're an ambitious side, but we have the depth in our squad and the key ingredients to go out and do that. We just have to put in the hard work and the performances when they are needed."

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Silverware

Northampton enjoyed arguably the most successful season in their history last time out, adding the Challenge Cup to their Aviva Premiership triumph.

However, they struggled against Europe's best in their continental campaign after a second-placed pool finish behind Leinster following two defeats, and the club will be eager to turn around their fortunes during this campaign.

Torrid time

On a personal level, last season was one to forget for Corbisiero, who was out for the majority of Saints' campaign with a knee injury.

That not only hampered progress at club level but also on the international scene, and the 25-year old has not featured for Stuart Lancaster's men since the clash with Argentina in November 2013.

Corbisiero then missed out on selection for the Six Nations and the tour of New Zealand but he is hoping to win back his place ahead of the World Cup which takes place in England next year.

"I've had a good pre-season, good time off and I'm fit, healthy and ready to go," he said.

"Every year is a big year for club and country but this season there is a big prize and the opportunity of a World Cup at the end.

"If I was chosen for the World Cup the next year it would be a dream."

Keep an eye on GiveMeSport's dedicated rugby union page for exclusive quotes from a number of top Aviva Premiership players over the coming days.

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Topics:
Heineken Cup
Northampton Saints
Aviva Premiership
Rugby Union

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