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Rugby Champions Cup 2015-16 - Tiers

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Post by brennomac Wed 03 Jun 2015, 1:05 pm

First topic message reminder :

Early days I know to be thinking about the RCC for 2015-16 with the Top 14 still not passed through the semi final stage, but as things stand this seems how the four tiers will work out:

Tier 1 – Glasgow, Saracens, Winner Top14 final, one of Munster/Bath/Loser Top 14 final, one of Munster/Bath/Loser Top 14 final

Tier 2 – one of Munster/Bath/Loser Top 14 final, Ospreys, Northampton, better Top 14 losing SF, one of Ulster/Leicester/worse Top 14 losing SF

Tier 3 - one of Ulster/Leicester/worse Top 14 losing SF, one of Ulster/Leicester/worse Top 14 losing SF, Leinster, Exeter, Racing Metro

Tier 4 – Scarlets, Wasps, Oyonnax, Treviso, Bordeaux

For Tiers 1 and 2, anybody know how the two from Munster, Bath and the losing Top 14 finalist who will go into Tier 1 and the one from that group who will go into Tier 2 will be picked - do they pick them out of a hat or what?.  Likewise for Tier 2 and 3, do they pick one from Ulster, Leicester and the worse Top 14 semi-finalist  to go into Tier 2 and the two others go into Tier 3.

From a Leinster point of view we're paying for our sh1te season and could potentially face the Top 14 winner - presume it'll be Toulon of Clermont, Bath and Scarlets - not a nice prospect.  Alternatively we could face Saracens, Northampton and Treviso - not easy but certainly more palatable. Quite happy to be in same tier as Exeter - wouldn't fancy playing them.  

Lots of permutations for all you fans of the other 19 teams to contemplate

****

Edit: Draw has now been made for both competitions and the pools look like this:

2015/16 Champions Cup pools

Pool 1: Saracens, Ulster Rugby, Toulouse, Oyonnax
Pool 2: ASM Clermont Auvergne, Ospreys, Exeter Chiefs, Bordeaux-Bègles
Pool 3: Glasgow Warriors, Northampton Saints, Racing 92, Scarlets
Pool 4: Stade Français Rugby, Munster Rugby, Leicester Tigers, Benetton Treviso
Pool 5: Bath Rugby, RC Toulon, Leinster Rugby, Wasps

2015/16 Challenge Cup pools

Pool 1: Connacht Rugby, Brive, Newcastle Falcons, Eniset-STM
Pool 2: Sale Sharks, Newport Gwent Dragons, Castres Olympique, Pau
Pool 3: Montpellier, Harlequins, Cardiff Blues, Cammi Rugby Calvisano
Pool 4: La Rochelle, Gloucester Rugby, Zebre Rugby, Worcester Warriors
Pool 5: Edinburgh Rugby, London Irish, Grenoble, Agen

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Post by whocares Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:54 pm

pool 4 is starting to look tasty
clermont have it easy so far

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Post by Notch Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:54 pm

Still hold out hope we'll get Bordeaux or Oyonnax. If it's Scarlets... Rolling Eyes
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Post by marty2086 Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:54 pm

Notch wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
Hazel Sapling wrote:Hosts announced for Champions Cup

Lyon for 2016 and Edinburgh for 2017

Interesting that they have not announced the 2017 challenge cup final location other than saying Edinburgh. Could they be thinking Scotstoun will have expanded enough by then and host in Glasgow?

They tend to host in one city, more than likely with Edinburghs move itll be at Easter Road

Or they have a double-header at Murrayfield. That would be interesting.

http://www.scotsman.com/sport/football/spfl-lower-divisions/sru-easter-road-could-be-amlin-final-venue-1-2972682

Won't be in the same stadium and Easter Road was used when they bid in 2014

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Post by Welly Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:54 pm

~Fuking hell Pool 5 is evil.

Happy with pool 4 all teams have history.


Last edited by Welly on Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:55 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Notch Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:55 pm

C'mon, avoid Scarlets and Treviso now!
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Post by Notch Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:56 pm

Well that's pleasing at least! Very happy to be playing Toulouse and Oyonnax. Saracens a disappointing draw.
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Post by Welly Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:56 pm

give Wasps 5

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Post by Welly Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:57 pm

I'm on fire!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Post by whocares Wed 17 Jun 2015, 1:57 pm

Welly wrote:~Fuking hell Pool 5 is evil.

Happy with pool 4 all teams have history.

Shocked

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:00 pm

Pool 5 the group of death then?

I don't think any Welsh team will be progressing this year. The quality of teams in this competition is exceptional and they haven't improved enough to compete yet. Scarlets will need to step up a few notches or they risk becoming whipping boys. They underperformed big time last season IMO.

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Post by Guest Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:02 pm

Notch wrote:Well that's pleasing at least! Very happy to be playing Toulouse and Oyonnax. Saracens a disappointing draw.

I'm happy with that. At least there will be a bit of an edge against Sarries. We owe them boxing Was hoping we could draw either Oyonnax or Treviso, and delighted we got Oyonnax.

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Post by whocares Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:03 pm

The Saint wrote:Pool 5 the group of death then?

I don't think any Welsh team will be progressing this year. The quality of teams in this competition is exceptional and they haven't improved enough to compete yet. Scarlets will need to step up a few notches or they risk becoming whipping boys. They underperformed big time last season IMO.

Ospreys has a good chance to be honest. pool 2 on paper is wide open. with the exception of Clermont Ospreys are the team with most "pedigree" and experience.

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Post by Notch Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:14 pm

Munchkin wrote:
Notch wrote:Well that's pleasing at least! Very happy to be playing Toulouse and Oyonnax. Saracens a disappointing draw.

I'm happy with that. At least there will be a bit of an edge against Sarries. We owe them boxing Was hoping we could draw either Oyonnax or Treviso, and delighted we got Oyonnax.

Yeah, happy with Toulouse too. A historic team with a great fan base. Would have preferred Bordeaux or maybe even Wasps from Tier 4. Saracens is a big let down. I know we're not gonna win the Champions Cup this year- our priority is to try and win the Pro12. So what you want in the pool phase is to be playing against big, historic teams who bring along lots of traveling fans to add atmosphere and colour and play an entertaining brand of rugby. Saracens is very disappointing from that point of view.

Oyonnax is good though, because its always great to play new teams.
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Post by rodders Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:21 pm

Joke tournament - pool 5 is ridiculous.
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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:28 pm

The Saint wrote:Pool 5 the group of death then?

I don't think any Welsh team will be progressing this year. The quality of teams in this competition is exceptional and they haven't improved enough to compete yet. Scarlets will need to step up a few notches or they risk becoming whipping boys. They underperformed big time last season IMO.

Well I would not count on that, Ospreys have a very good chance against Exeter and Bordeaux in their group, Clermont Auvergne are a tough one I will admit, but they could beat those at Swansea. For me pool 1 and 5 look the toughest.

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:34 pm

Depends if they're bringing in any more new players - I don't see any weaknesses in the opposition, whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess. Any injuries to Biggar and the team will probably fall apart, Sam Davies just isn't a suitable back-up. Fingers crossed though as I would like to see them progress.

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Post by Pot Hale Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:40 pm

They look tasty. At a guess, top two might be:

Pool 1 - Saracens, Toulouse
Pool 2 - Clermont, Exeter
Pool 3 - Racing, Glasgow
Pool 4 - Stade, Munster
Pool 5 - Toulon, Bath

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Post by Pot Hale Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:41 pm

The Saint wrote:Depends if they're bringing in any more new players - I don't see any weaknesses in the opposition, whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess. Any injuries to Biggar and the team will probably fall apart, Sam Davies just isn't a suitable back-up. Fingers crossed though as I would like to see them progress.

A bit harsh, perhaps?
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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:44 pm

So these are the groups:-

POOL ONE: Saracens, Ulster, Toulouse, Oyonnax
POOL TWO: Clermont Auvergne, Ospreys, Exeter, Bordeaux
POOL THREE: Glasgow, Northampton, Racing 92, Scarlets
POOL FOUR: Stade Francais, Munster, Leicester, Treviso
POOL FIVE: Bath, Toulon, Leinster, Wasps

For me this is how I see it.

Pool 1 - Saracens, Toulouse
Pool 2 - Clermont, Ospreys
Pool 3 - Racing, Glasgow
Pool 4 - Stade, Leicester
Pool 5 - Toulon, Bath

I will more than likely be wrong though.

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Post by Breadvan Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:46 pm

Decent draw for the Ospreys. Pool 5 tho.. Erm Snobby attitude towards Sarries there Notch.
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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:46 pm

Pot Hale wrote:
The Saint wrote:Depends if they're bringing in any more new players - I don't see any weaknesses in the opposition, whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess. Any injuries to Biggar and the team will probably fall apart, Sam Davies just isn't a suitable back-up. Fingers crossed though as I would like to see them progress.

A bit harsh, perhaps?

I agree, it is a bit harsh, especially since they have re-signed Paul James from Bath and Gareth Delve to bolster their pack.

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Post by George Carlin Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:48 pm

I've updated Brenn's original post to show the pools announced today.

Fairly happy with that as a Glasgow fan - could have been a hell of a lot worse. Very Happy
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Post by Sin é Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:55 pm

LordDowlais wrote:So these are the groups:-

POOL ONE: Saracens, Ulster, Toulouse, Oyonnax
POOL TWO: Clermont Auvergne, Ospreys, Exeter, Bordeaux
POOL THREE: Glasgow, Northampton, Racing 92, Scarlets
POOL FOUR: Stade Francais, Munster, Leicester, Treviso
POOL FIVE: Bath, Toulon, Leinster, Wasps

For me this is how I see it.

Pool 1 - Saracens, Toulouse
Pool 2 - Clermont, Ospreys
Pool 3 - Racing, Glasgow
Pool 4 - Stade, Leicester
Pool 5 - Toulon, Bath

I will more than likely be wrong though.

Only 2 runners up involved (8 in the Quarter Finals).

imo, 2 winners from Pool 2 & 4.

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Post by wayne Wed 17 Jun 2015, 2:59 pm

Decent draw for us (Ospreys) didn't want Saracens from Tier 1 and Wasps from Tier 4, so that is good, could be a second place after being drawn in the second Tier, although I wouldn't put a lot of money on it.

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Post by Guest Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:03 pm

Notch wrote:
Munchkin wrote:
Notch wrote:Well that's pleasing at least! Very happy to be playing Toulouse and Oyonnax. Saracens a disappointing draw.

I'm happy with that. At least there will be a bit of an edge against Sarries. We owe them boxing Was hoping we could draw either Oyonnax or Treviso, and delighted we got Oyonnax.

Yeah, happy with Toulouse too. A historic team with a great fan base. Would have preferred Bordeaux or maybe even Wasps from Tier 4. Saracens is a big let down. I know we're not gonna win the Champions Cup this year- our priority is to try and win the Pro12. So what you want in the pool phase is to be playing against big, historic teams who bring along lots of traveling fans to add atmosphere and colour and play an entertaining brand of rugby. Saracens is very disappointing from that point of view.

Oyonnax is good though, because its always great to play new teams.

We're not going to win it, but still a chance to get out of the group if we finish 2nd. That's why I wanted one of Treviso or Oyonnax. Happier with Oyannax because we play Treviso in PRO12 anyway.
I would have preferred not to have Sarries in the group, but then there will be an edge to the games and I can look forward to that at least.
Even though we won't win anything I'm still really looking forward to see how we play under Kiss.

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Post by Breadvan Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:05 pm

Pot Hale wrote:
The Saint wrote:Depends if they're bringing in any more new players - I don't see any weaknesses in the opposition, whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess. Any injuries to Biggar and the team will probably fall apart, Sam Davies just isn't a suitable back-up. Fingers crossed though as I would like to see them progress.

A bit harsh, perhaps?

TBf, he's never liked us.... Wink
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Post by killer938 Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:08 pm

Sin é wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:So these are the groups:-

POOL ONE: Saracens, Ulster, Toulouse, Oyonnax
POOL TWO: Clermont Auvergne, Ospreys, Exeter, Bordeaux
POOL THREE: Glasgow, Northampton, Racing 92, Scarlets
POOL FOUR: Stade Francais, Munster, Leicester, Treviso
POOL FIVE: Bath, Toulon, Leinster, Wasps

For me this is how I see it.

Pool 1 - Saracens, Toulouse
Pool 2 - Clermont, Ospreys
Pool 3 - Racing, Glasgow
Pool 4 - Stade, Leicester
Pool 5 - Toulon, Bath

I will more than likely be wrong though.

Only 2 runners up involved (8 in the Quarter Finals).

imo, 2 winners from Pool 2 & 4.


Surely with 5 groups it would be 3 runners up along with the 5 winners?

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Post by RDW Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:11 pm

Leicester Tigers have drawn the Italian team in 6 out of the last 7 seasons - absolutely astonishing luck!

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:36 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
Pot Hale wrote:
The Saint wrote:Depends if they're bringing in any more new players - I don't see any weaknesses in the opposition, whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess. Any injuries to Biggar and the team will probably fall apart, Sam Davies just isn't a suitable back-up. Fingers crossed though as I would like to see them progress.

A bit harsh, perhaps?

I agree, it is a bit harsh, especially since they have re-signed Paul James from Bath and Gareth Delve to bolster their pack.

I don't see why it's harsh. Jarvis is their first choice and since bursting onto the scene has gone backwards, kind of like the same direction he goes in the scrum. Smith is still pretty young and learning the trade, promising player though. I think Paul James is a bit of a penalty machine and is getting on a bit now, so may be past his best. Don't see how Delve helps the front 5 in the scrum if I'm honest. They could do with a new TH, but in most other positions they have some good players. All the times they've faced Northampton they just looked second best by a mile in every department, how can we be sure that a lot has changed from that?

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Post by Breadvan Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:38 pm

Look at the highlighted words Saint.. Laugh


Last edited by Breadvan on Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Pete330v2 Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:38 pm

It matters not who your respective club has been drawn against, with the odds stacked strongly in their favour Toulon will once again prove that trophies are bought not won. It's astonishing that after all the screaming and tantrums the competition still has as level a playing field as the mount everest 1stXV home pitch.
I must go and buy my VW top....I mean Toulon....or is it Orangina????

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:43 pm

Breadvan wrote:Look at the highlighted words Saint.. Laugh

So how would you describe it? From what I've seen, it was worse than any other scrum in the top 6 (bar perhaps Munster who were expert cheats in that area last season).

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Post by 21st Century Schizoid Man Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:47 pm

FFS thats the very draw I didn't want as stated on another thread earlier - based on good visits etc etc. Big hairy feckin baws !!!!!! Suppose a trip to West Paris (La Defense ?) is some compensation.
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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:52 pm

The Saint wrote:
Breadvan wrote:Look at the highlighted words Saint.. Laugh

So how would you describe it? From what I've seen, it was worse than any other scrum in the top 6 (bar perhaps Munster who were expert cheats in that area last season).

Well they will have Steenkamp for next season, he missed last season with an injury, they will have Paul James, Nicky Smith, Dimitri Arhip, AWJ, Tupuric, Baldwin, Baker, Lydiate, Tyler Ardron there is a making of a good pack there.

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:55 pm

Thanks for listing the players that we already knew were on the Ospreys books LD... Outstanding contribution.

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Post by whocares Wed 17 Jun 2015, 3:58 pm

21st Century Schizoid Man wrote:FFS thats the very draw I didn't want as stated on another thread earlier - based on good visits etc etc.   Big hairy feckin baws !!!!!!   Suppose a trip to West Paris (La Defense ?) is some compensation.

their new stadium (arena 92) wont be open before end 2016 so I assume this will be played at the very outdated Yves du Manoir further west in Colombes.

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Post by RDW Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:00 pm

whocares wrote:
21st Century Schizoid Man wrote:FFS thats the very draw I didn't want as stated on another thread earlier - based on good visits etc etc.   Big hairy feckin baws !!!!!!   Suppose a trip to West Paris (La Defense ?) is some compensation.

their new stadium (arena 92) wont be open before end 2016 so I assume this will be played at the very outdated Yves du Manoir further west in Colombes.

I went there when Edinburgh played them in Paris - not too difficult to get to.  Bit of a soleless stadium though in the middle of a housing estate next to a motorway.  Not the biggest crowd either!

It is quite a small pitch too, which won't help Glasgow.

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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:02 pm

The Saint wrote:Thanks for listing the players that we already knew were on the Ospreys books LD... Outstanding contribution.

But you were saying that Ospreys scrum is a mess, what evidence do you have to back this claim up, they were unlucky not to finish 1st this season, you do not get that high up the table with your pack in a mess. Now Cardiff Blues on the other hand, yes their pack is an aging mess.

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Post by 21st Century Schizoid Man Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:02 pm

Thanks whocares. I am basing my rage on good trips and really wanted Stade Michelin and Exeter Chiefs for the crack and all !
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Post by Breadvan Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:08 pm

The Saint wrote:
Breadvan wrote:Look at the highlighted words Saint.. Laugh

So how would you describe it? From what I've seen, it was worse than any other scrum in the top 6 (bar perhaps Munster who were expert cheats in that area last season).

whilst Ospreys scum is still a mess.
^^^^
^^^^
Btw...I would describe our sCrum as inconsistent.
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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:23 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
The Saint wrote:Thanks for listing the players that we already knew were on the Ospreys books LD... Outstanding contribution.

But you were saying that Ospreys scrum is a mess, what evidence do you have to back this claim up, they were unlucky not to finish 1st this season, you do not get that high up the table with your pack in a mess. Now Cardiff Blues on the other hand, yes their pack is an aging mess.

Based on what I've seen, and Arhip got worse as the season went on which was unusual. The evidence is in the matches throughout the year in both competitions. This is a standard bonehead reply by you LD along with just pointlessly listing all the players in the pack.

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Post by yappysnap Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:27 pm

Tbh the pools all look pretty exciting to me. Two things I want from next seasons tournaments are 1. Clermont and Toulon to miss the final 2. To get to an away game at Pau

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Post by yappysnap Wed 17 Jun 2015, 4:28 pm

When are fixtures announced?

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Post by Cyril Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:21 pm

Munchkin wrote:
Cyril wrote:For the good of rugby (and humanity in general) we need Munster to get an easier pool this time round.

The business end of the tournament without 'the best fans in the world' doesn't bear thinking about.

Hopefully World Rugby will step in if necessary.

I agree, Munster fans would be up there with the best in world in terms of away support and helping create a great atmosphere. Well said.

Looks like it's happened. Those 'marvellous, passionate, no-one-can-quite-get-rugby-like-them' fans have a chance of knock-out rugby again Smile

On a slightly more serious note, there are some very interesting fixtures in the offing.

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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:30 pm

The Saint wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
The Saint wrote:Thanks for listing the players that we already knew were on the Ospreys books LD... Outstanding contribution.

But you were saying that Ospreys scrum is a mess, what evidence do you have to back this claim up, they were unlucky not to finish 1st this season, you do not get that high up the table with your pack in a mess. Now Cardiff Blues on the other hand, yes their pack is an aging mess.

Based on what I've seen, and Arhip got worse as the season went on which was unusual. The evidence is in the matches throughout the year in both competitions. This is a standard bonehead reply by you LD along with just pointlessly listing all the players in the pack.


Oh here we go, I am being insulted agian by Saint, even though he thinks that a side that were a bonus point from finishing first had a mess of a pack, if that is the case then all the other teams below them have real trouble when it comes to scrum time, your hatred for Ospreys knows no bounds, it is really quite embarrassing. I would say that Ospreys scrum has room for improvement but they are far from being a mess.

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:44 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
The Saint wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
The Saint wrote:Thanks for listing the players that we already knew were on the Ospreys books LD... Outstanding contribution.

But you were saying that Ospreys scrum is a mess, what evidence do you have to back this claim up, they were unlucky not to finish 1st this season, you do not get that high up the table with your pack in a mess. Now Cardiff Blues on the other hand, yes their pack is an aging mess.

Based on what I've seen, and Arhip got worse as the season went on which was unusual. The evidence is in the matches throughout the year in both competitions. This is a standard bonehead reply by you LD along with just pointlessly listing all the players in the pack.


Oh here we go, I am being insulted agian by Saint, even though he thinks that a side that were a bonus point from finishing first had a mess of a pack, if that is the case then all the other teams below them have real trouble when it comes to scrum time, your hatred for Ospreys knows no bounds, it is really quite embarrassing. I would say that Ospreys scrum has room for improvement but they are far from being a mess.

Another bonehead follow up. I started discussing the scrums and you were bringing up how they have the makings of a quality pack (which was nothing to do with my point). Going by all this it doesn't seem like you pay a lot of attention to fixtures in the league... I don't hate the Ospreys at all I just hate most of their bonkers fans that I come into contact with. I guess that includes you too now, claiming to be neutral yet going down on the Ospreys at every opportunity. Why oh why can't you Ospreylians ever understand that outside of Ospreylia some supporters might be of a different opinion? Wind your neck in LD, your comments are completely bonkers and largely irrelevant.

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Post by LordDowlais Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:50 pm

Ok saint I suggest we leave this alone, before we derail the thread. But not once did I say anything about a quality pack, I said they had the makings of a good pack.

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Post by Guest Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:51 pm

Cyril wrote:
Munchkin wrote:
Cyril wrote:For the good of rugby (and humanity in general) we need Munster to get an easier pool this time round.

The business end of the tournament without 'the best fans in the world' doesn't bear thinking about.

Hopefully World Rugby will step in if necessary.

I agree, Munster fans would be up there with the best in world in terms of away support and helping create a great atmosphere. Well said.

Looks like it's happened. Those 'marvellous, passionate, no-one-can-quite-get-rugby-like-them' fans have a chance of knock-out rugby again Smile

On a slightly more serious note, there are some very interesting fixtures in the offing.

I was being serious. The Munster support is great for the champions cup.

The pools are certainly interesting with pool 5 in particular being a tough one to get out of. Poole 1 will be tough  for Ulster, but I think Ulster are in with a chance of qualifying for the quarters if they can finish 2nd. We won't win the championship though. That will be a French side.

It will also be interesting to see how the RWC effects the teams. It's going to hit Ulster harder than any of the other teams in our pool, so qualifying 2nd might be a reach.


Last edited by Munchkin on Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:59 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by The Saint Wed 17 Jun 2015, 5:58 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Ok saint I suggest we leave this alone, before we derail the thread. But not once did I say anything about a quality pack, I said they had the makings of a good pack.

I don't disagree, but that's not the point. They had this pack last season and the scrums were quite underwhelming.

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Post by Cyril Wed 17 Jun 2015, 6:00 pm

Munchkin,

It's a shame you've given up an Irish side winning the trophy. Have a bit of optimism Smile

I agree that Ulster probably don't have a chance (I think Ashton will enjoy the games against them as usual and Toulouse are normally strong - Oyonnax are decent and certainly not like having an Italian side) but Munster could do well. As could Leinster if they get their act together. Both Bath and Wasps are still in the early stages of establishing themselves back at the top level. It's a heck of a pool though.

By the way, I was joking about Munster. They do have good support but boy do they let you know how they don't think anyone comes close to being a 'proper' side with 'proper' fans and 'proper' values Wink They're a bit precious like that and don't take criticism well.

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