Former Donegal football manager Jim McGuinness has been drafted in by Saracens to share his motivational skills ahead of Saturday's European Rugby Champions Cup semi-final showdown against Clermont Auvergne.

Sports psychologist McGuinness, 42, who is part of Celtic's set-up under manager Ronny Deila, addressed Saracens’ first-team squad earlier this week as they prepared for their tie in France.

"He took [Donegal] on a journey over four years and it seemed like a very similar journey to our own."

McGuinness guided Donegal to the All-Ireland title in 2012 and were losing finalists in 2014, as well as winning three Ulster titles.

The Glenties man has also previously worked with Europe captain Paul McGinley during the Ryder Cup victory over the United States at Gleneagles last year.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Saracens rugby director Mark McCall said."We bring speakers in on a regular basis.

"Jim McGuinness was the Donegal football manager for four seasons. He's currently the sports psychologist at Celtic and he was Paul McGinley's right-hand man at the Ryder Cup in 2014.

"When he took over at Donegal in 2010, they hadn't won a game for three seasons and hadn't won a championship for 19 seasons.

"He took them on a journey over four years and it seemed like a very similar journey to our own.

"He captivated the group for an hour. He is a passionate speaker and he was fantastic for the players, who really enjoyed it.”

Former Ulster coach McCall added: "I am not from Donegal, but I studied the story from afar and admired what he did. He had a very interesting story."