Saracens can prove they have built something special by performing well in Europe despite the obstacles they have faced this season, according to Richard Wigglesworth.

The reigning champions of England and Europe overcame previously unbeaten Leinster 25-17 at the weekend in Dublin in a rematch of last year’s Champions Cup final.

Alex Goode’s first-half try and Elliot Daly’s boot gave the visitors as 22-3 lead at the break before they held off a fightback from the Guinness PRO14 champions to triumph.

And having already been demoted to the Championship next season for salary cap breaches, scrum-half Wigglesworth said the players were eager to show what they are made of.

“We are not looking for any sympathy because what is happening is happening,” he said, after the victory was achieved without ten players who have left the club or gone out on loan.

“Maybe we deserved this and we are having to do it the hard way with one hand tied behind our backs. Perhaps it will prove that what we built is true and special.

“We want to do well in Europe for each other rather than prove anything to anyone else. I’d be lying if it wasn’t a bonus to show everyone, but it is definitely not the primary motivation.

“We had wanted to play Leinster for months and months and struggled in recent weeks to find the level of performance that got us through.”

Tries from Andrew Porter and Jordan Larmour after the interval saw Leinster reduced the deficit to five points but Goode’s last-minute penalty sealed a stunning Saracens win.

And Michael Rhodes, who won the star of the match award for his display, saved special praise for the forwards after Saracens weathered the Leinster storm to reach the last four.

“This was huge for us,” said the South African. “A lot of people didn’t give us much of a chance coming here against Leinster so this is a great victory for us.

“As you know, it’s been a tough year for us to come here and get the win was massive. We knew we had to show up here, especially with our forward pack.

“We had a great week of preparation and from minute one things just felt good for us out there. That was the plan and it takes a 15-man effort but as forwards we really brought it.

“We knew they were going to come out firing after that first half and we spoke about it in the changing room. For us to weather the storm of it like we knew we’d have to was amazing and that was a pivotal moment in the game for us.”

Saracens will now face a semi-final clash with Racing 92 on Saturday, having defeated the French outfit back in the 2016 Champions Cup final to lift the title.