Ulster Rugby head coach Dan McFarland is relishing the prospect of visiting last season’s finalists Leinster Rugby in the Heineken Champions Cup Round of 16.

Ulster secured their place in the knockout stage with a dramatic 22-11 win over Sale Sharks in Belfast on Saturday, snatching the final Pool B qualification place at the expense of their opponents.

That sees Ulster travel to interprovincial rivals Leinster, who finished top of Pool A after picking up four straight bonus-point wins.

McFarland is excited by the task of facing the four-time winners of EPCR’s elite tournament in Dublin and says it will be a great test for his team.

“That’s the goal, you want to play in the play-off games, and we’ve done it again,” McFarland said. “I think our reward is a trip to Leinster.

“I quite fancy Leinster, challenge yourself against the best.”

McFarland went on to hail the home support for Ulster’s win over Sale, with the Kingspan Stadium providing a crackling atmosphere on chilly January evening.

“We came out, we wanted to put on a performance at home, in front of our fans, in our house, and I thought the crowd was electric tonight, the atmosphere was brilliant,” he added.

“I think a chunk of that was to do with how we played. I thought we were excellent on both sides of the ball. It wasn’t perfect obviously but Sale are a really good team, they don’t let many tries in.

“I thought across the board we had some fantastic performances.”