CHAMPIONS CUP – On this 4th day of the Champions Cup, you can discover the forecasts from the editors. Lyon defeated by South African Bulls, Leinster crush racing 92, Toulouse with a short header against Munster.
The Lyonnais were not unworthy during this edition of the Champions Cup. But with three defeats on the clock, their qualification is compromised. Above all, despite their encouraging performances, Xavier Garbajosa’s men never managed to achieve eighty full minutes. Faced with the power of the Blue Bulls, who had hurt them in the first game in Pretoria, they could find it difficult to raise the bar.
Our prediction: win for the Bulls
Rochelais has proven it: they are off-road. Against Ulster last week, the wind and freezing rain had not prevented them from coming out victorious. The week before they made a copy close to 20/20 against the Toulouse leader. So in Northampton the defending champions are ultra favourites. Especially since they need to win to hope to receive in the final stages.
Our prediction: win for La Rochelle
Champions Cup – Clermont, Racing 92, Bordeaux-Bègles…: all possible qualification scenarios for French clubs
In pool A, the two clubs are poorly placed. Gloucester, ninth with 5 points, did not feature among the best teams in the competition. And Bordeaux-Bègles, eleventh with 2 points, have a small chance to qualify now. But at home, the Girondins will want to lay the groundwork for their end of the season, as they have done in the league since the beginning of December (4 wins in a row).
Our prediction: victory for Bordeaux-Bègles
How could the Racingmen hope for victory from this trip? Not that this Racing has the means and ambitions to make it in the Champions Cup. But the Leinstermen are untouchable: almost 50 points scored per game, 15 consecutive wins in all competitions…
Our prediction: win for Leinster
The ASM Clermont week will not exactly prepare for this particular match… We must not forget that this is the first match in South Africa for the Auvergne club, who took the plane on Monday. On the same day Jono Gibbes was sacked and on Wednesday Christophe Urios was made official as manager with immediate effect. Bolstered by their many Springboks, the Stormers have something to look forward to.
Our prediction: win for the Stormers
Four years without a win in the Champions Cup is a long time for Castres Olympique. And all indications are that this ugly streak isn’t going to stop anytime soon. Tarnais has no points, is a red lantern in pool A and no longer has a chance to qualify. Conversely, Exeter Chiefs keep all their chances. And at home they will be difficult to worry about.
Our prediction: Exeter to win
The London Irish know how to move the game, but will they have the resources to dominate MHR at home? Like CO, the English have already been eliminated. Montpellier can therefore use that to secure a good place at the top of the table.
Our prediction: win for Montpellier
No need for a big gap, but Toulouse need a win to be sure of receiving in the eighth and quarter. The many returns enjoyed by the Toulouse group will be an asset in beating the Irish from Munster.
Our prediction: victory for Toulouse