Billy Vunipola booed as Saracens lose to Bristol Bears

England international Billy Vunipola was booed after coming off the bench during Saracens’ defeat at Bristol Bears.

Vunipola played for Saracens 24 hours after supporting Israel Folau’s controversial comments on social media.

Vunipola refused to distance himself from Folau’s comments and said he has sympathy with the Australian’s views.

Saracens have said they take the matter “very seriously” and that it will be “handled internally,” while the Rugby Football Union will meet the England forward next week to discuss his social media posts.

Vunipola came on after 50 minutes and was booed by the Ashton Gate crowd as Saracens eventually fell to 23-21 defeat.

After the game, Saracens’ director of rugby, Mark McCall, admitted the boos were unexpected and said Vunipola still wants to do his best for the team.

He said: “The club have made a very clear statement. No, we have not sat down with him as a club but obviously I’ll talk to him myself. The club will talk to him in due course.

“I’m not sure if (the booing) was surprising or not, I have not really thought about it. Perhaps it was a bit unexpected.

“I don’t want to get dragged into it. You are going to ask my opinion on the whole thing which I am not going to give you today.

“I’ll keep referring to the club statement if you don’t mind. I don’t think my opinion is particularly relevant even though I know you’d like to have it.

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