After all their issues this week, and missing a host of World Cup players, Saracens produced a suffocating display at Kingsholm on Saturday, seemingly drawing strength from their perceived notoriety and ground their way to a stifling 12-21 Gallagher Premiership victory.
Saracens almost gave a masterclass in how to win away from home. They soaked up early pressure from Gloucester Rugby, before moving downfield and coming away with points from almost every visit to the home 22.
The Cherry and Whites were below bar, of that there is no doubt, and having to try and win from behind against a side like Saracens is never a good place to be. There was plenty of effort as the team tried to get back into the game, but the visitors stood firm.
Early chances came and went, two five metre lineouts couldn’t yield a positive outcome in terms of points and the visitors slowly but surely took control. A Manu Vunipola penalty opened the scoring, before Nick Tompkins went over from close range, Vunipola converting for 0-10.
Gloucester Rugby did hit back with a stunner of a try from Tom Marshall, the winger breaking down the right, chipping ahead and then controlling the bouncing ball to score.
But the home team finished the half the stronger, errors and indiscipline from the home team leading to two late Vunipola penalties and a 5-16 lead at the break.
The Cherry and Whites badly needed the next score, but it was the visitors who showed their clinical edge as Ben Earl went over from a catch and drive.
Saracens then showed their strength without ball in hand, as they absorbed everything Gloucester Rugby could throw at them. Home pressure was finally rewarded when Lewis Ludlow crashed over after a series of penalties but it was scant consolation.
Plenty for Gloucester Rugby to work upon, they were far from at their fluent best, but credit to Saracens who seemed to revel in their role of pantomime villains and draw strength from any vitriol directed in their direction by the crowd.
Next week sees the Cherry and Whites enter European action as they’re back at Kingsholm with Toulouse the visitors on Friday 15 November.
The following week sees the team travel to the south of France to take on Montpellier.