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Gallagher Premiership 2020/21

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formerly known as Sam
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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 05 Mar 2021, 9:46 pm

First topic message reminder :

That's not a high tackle. Heyes initial contact is the chest. If you're going to review it, review it properly. It's a legal tackle.

How did the assistant miss that the LI player knocks the ball out of JVP's hands and into touch before the Joseph break. It was right in front of him FFS. Lineout Tigers.

Anyway, Tigers blow what should have been a straightforward win and only get 4 instead of 5 points. LI manage to snatch 2 league points with a TBP at the death. Probably a fair result as LI were the better side in the first half but didn't really show up in the second. Hassell-Collins is looking like a really classy player, shame Parton went off.

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Post by doctor_grey Sat 26 Jun 2021, 11:17 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:
BigGee wrote:Quins really do want this, don't they

Can they go 80 mins after last week though?
They certainly don't lack for confidence.  That last try showed Dombrandt going to space at real speed.  Bloody hell, I hope the upcoming RWC planning has Dombrandt and Sam Simmonds fighting it out for Number 8 with Billy Cheeseburger watching from McDonalds.  Perfect time to reinvigorate the squad rather than play the same old, who are now getting old and stale.  The energy in both semi-finals and this game is terrific.

Callum aChick will show you tomorrow why theres 3 number 8s and Tom Willis why theres 4!
Looking forward to it. The current England squad needs reinvigorating. More options the better!

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Post by doctor_grey Sat 26 Jun 2021, 11:30 pm

lostinwales wrote:
lostinwales wrote:Quins will win.

Now going to check my lottery numbers....

I thought it would be close. I think Exeter are a wonderful team and I have(or had) links with Devon for a very long time. But Quins had that date with destiny thing going on.
You are friendly with quite a few sheep, then?

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Post by lostinwales Sun 27 Jun 2021, 2:40 am

doctor_grey wrote:
lostinwales wrote:
lostinwales wrote:Quins will win.

Now going to check my lottery numbers....

I thought it would be close. I think Exeter are a wonderful team and I have(or had) links with Devon for a very long time. But Quins had that date with destiny thing going on.
You are friendly with quite a few sheep, then?

My original response seems to have disappeared. The sheep of South Devon are known for the red clothes they wear, but are not otherwise special and of no particular interest.

I also lived in South Wales. Sheep around that way live off seaweed. Ready salted. But I never knew any personally until after their deaths.

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Post by Poorfour Sun 27 Jun 2021, 5:44 am

Well, that was a satisfactory end to the season
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Post by rosbif Sun 27 Jun 2021, 8:15 am

Congrats to the Quins , fantastic match , I think they could walk on water at the moment. Next season should be special with Sarries back , Tigers, Northamps and Sale much improved. To think there was only 3 current England players in the final says a lot about Jones.

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Post by Poorfour Sun 27 Jun 2021, 9:32 am

rosbif wrote:Congrats to the Quins , fantastic match , I think they could walk on  water at the moment. Next season should be special with Sarries back , Tigers, Northamps  and Sale much improved. To think there was only 3 current England players in  the final says a lot about Jones.

It’s going to be an insanely competitive league next season, that’s for sure.
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Post by TightHEAD Sun 27 Jun 2021, 9:46 am

Great game yesterday.

Bit concerned for Cowan Dickie at the time as they flipped him on his back very quickly without the usual neck injury assesment and opened his airway, looked to me like he was unresponsive for a few seconds.

Great to see him walking about at the end of the game.
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Post by TightHEAD Sun 27 Jun 2021, 9:48 am

rosbif wrote:Congrats to the Quins , fantastic match , I think they could walk on  water at the moment. Next season should be special with Sarries back , Tigers, Northamps  and Sale much improved. To think there was only 3 current England players in  the final says a lot about Jones.

....and Bath. kiss
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Post by Poorfour Sun 27 Jun 2021, 10:27 am

rosbif wrote:Congrats to the Quins , fantastic match , I think they could walk on  water at the moment. Next season should be special with Sarries back , Tigers, Northamps  and Sale much improved. To think there was only 3 current England players in  the final says a lot about Jones.

I like to think of Joe Marler as the Once and Future Prop of England rugby. When his country needs him, he will rise again to fight for them. As long as you pay for the helicopter.

(Worrying thought: are helicopters covered by the salary cap?)
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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 27 Jun 2021, 5:42 pm

LCD, Williams, Hill and Slade for Chiefs Marchant for Quins all played in the 6N. Marler would have played if he'd made himself available and Nowell if he'd been fit. I make that 7. Several other players in the squad have been looked at previously and capped.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 27 Jun 2021, 6:45 pm

Poorfour wrote:Well, that was a satisfactory end to the season

Laugh Laugh One of my favourite posts for a while. A casual understatement of the last couple of weekends for a Quins fan! clap

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 28 Jun 2021, 8:50 am

Seems to be a lot more grumbling on social media regarding a 4th placed team winning than in the past. For the first time ages I've actually given a club game another watch. Fantastic game. Marker is a bit of machine ain't he.

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Post by mikey_dragon Mon 28 Jun 2021, 9:00 am

Poorfour wrote:
rosbif wrote:Congrats to the Quins , fantastic match , I think they could walk on  water at the moment. Next season should be special with Sarries back , Tigers, Northamps  and Sale much improved. To think there was only 3 current England players in  the final says a lot about Jones.

I like to think of Joe Marler as the Once and Future Prop of England rugby. When his country needs him, he will rise again to fight for them. As long as you pay for the helicopter.

(Worrying thought: are helicopters covered by the salary cap?)

The next Phil Vickery then.

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Post by TightHEAD Mon 28 Jun 2021, 1:59 pm

In my bored state I just put Wimbledon on, how why was the rugby flagship event only allowed 10k in a huge stadium yet these Gents and Ladies are allowed to sit next to each other?
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Post by Rugby Fan Mon 28 Jun 2021, 2:53 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Seems to be a lot more grumbling on social media regarding a 4th placed team winning than in the past.

I don't like the play-off finish. However, if someone hasn't complained before, when anyone other than the team finishing top ends up as champion, then they can't have an issue when it happens to be the 4th placed side.

Just listening to Sean O'Brien and Alex Goode on the House of Rugby podcast. Suddenly, Adam Jones, who appeared on the previous show, called in from a pub, where he is obviously still celebrating. Sean O'Brien asked him where he was, then couldn't finish the podcast fast enough, to head off to join him.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 28 Jun 2021, 4:09 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Seems to be a lot more grumbling on social media regarding a 4th placed team winning than in the past.

I hadn't noticed that - but then I don't do Twitter.

I must admit, I wasn't sure how I would feel about the 4th placed team being crowned Champions, but the view I take is that in order to claim that title Quins had to beat Bristol and then Exeter on successive weekends, and neither opponent can have any real grumbles about how they did so. Given how close the matches were, they were remarkably uncontroversial. In addition, if you look at Quins' form since Gustard left, it's on a par with both Bristol and Exeter. You could have said the same for Sale, had they triumphed - the turnaround Sanderson has worked is pretty remarkable. This season, perhaps more than any other, the four quarter finalists were very evenly matched in terms of form and performances over the second half of the season.

What I have noticed, particularly in the rugby press, is a huge amount of goodwill towards Quins. A little bit for the unlikeliness of the story, a little bit more for Joe Marler's helicopter trips, enormous shifts and post match interviews but mostly for the entertainment they've brought to the game. Plenty of pundits have dubbed the final the best final the premiership have seen, and a similar number have declared the miracle of Bristanbul [1] [2] the best game of rugby they have seen.

In a summer when rugby is jostling for attention among a logjam of sporting action, it's hard not to celebrate such a wonderful advert for the game.

---
[1] As Danny Care dubbed it on the BBC Rugby pod
[2] Though it's not Bristanbul, it's Quinstantinople.
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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 28 Jun 2021, 4:49 pm

What a game....absolutely fantastic spectacle. Congratulations to the Quins lads on here, very much deserved.

On the 4th team winning it.....well that's the way it goes. Exeter finished 2nd, I don't think they have much to grumble about, if it is their fans complaining.

Amazing finish to the season.

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Post by RiscaGame Mon 28 Jun 2021, 4:51 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
Just listening to Sean O'Brien and Alex Goode on the House of Rugby podcast. Suddenly, Adam Jones, who appeared on the previous show, called in from a pub, where he is obviously still celebrating. Sean O'Brien asked him where he was, then couldn't finish the podcast fast enough, to head off to join him.

laughing That's brilliant.

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Post by mikey_dragon Mon 28 Jun 2021, 5:17 pm

How do people feel about Adam Jones as a coach now? I know he was being questioned on here before, so thought I’d ask…

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 28 Jun 2021, 5:25 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:How do people feel about Adam Jones as a coach now? I know he was being questioned on here before, so thought I’d ask…

Well he must take some credit for what's happened at Quins for sure. What is he? Only scrum coach? If so...Quins scrum has went very well, but they have a good base. I suspect he does more than the scrum tbh.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 28 Jun 2021, 5:43 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:How do people feel about Adam Jones as a coach now? I know he was being questioned on here before, so thought I’d ask…

From memory the main questions around Jones seemed to come from how much (and quickly) Sinckler improved in the scrum when he started working with Neal Hatley. Wig deserves some credit as well as Sinckler seemed to kick on at scrum time during the 2017 Lions tour.

It seemed pretty roundabout thinking to me though that Hatley and Wig (both very experience and highly considered scrum coaches) having an impact on one player that Jones hadn't had the same impact on yet made Bomb a poor coach when he was so early in his coaching career. In coaching terms Bomb is basically just finishing an academy contract! His knowledge of the game is huge, if given time he could be a great coach.

Wilco Louw has been a big signing for Quins. For a while with Colliers injuries and Sinckler away with England they lacked an out and out starter at tighthead for much the season. Louw is a really good TH and has given them stability. Marler being available all season has been massive for them too. They've basically gone from having a weak front row for most the season due to international call ups to having stronger starting props than their opposition most weeks. A great place to be with those backs behind them.

It's an exciting Quins squad with some talented young coaches in Nick Evans, Jerry Flannery, Jordan Turner-Hall and Bomb. Tabai Matson has finally been confirmed as their head coach, it will be really interesting to see where he leads that group going forward.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 28 Jun 2021, 6:06 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:How do people feel about Adam Jones as a coach now? I know he was being questioned on here before, so thought I’d ask…

Well he must take some credit for what's happened at Quins for sure. What is he? Only scrum coach? If so...Quins scrum has went very well, but they have a good base. I suspect he does more than the scrum tbh.

Don't know, Jerry Flannery is there as well and presumably does the lineout (which was impressive). The work of the Quins forwards was exceptional but more tenacity and desire than organisation. It's hard to judge. Quins have some coaches who are relatively young in coaching terms but who had very careers and have massive knowledge of the game.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 28 Jun 2021, 6:18 pm

Bomb is very much a baby in coaching terms, but I have been impressed by how quickly he melded Marler, Baldwin and Louw into a very effective unit. From memory, Louw’s integration into Quins’ pack was faster than Sinckler’s into Bristol’s.

The Quins coaching team are uniformly very young in coaching terms - most of them were playing less than 5 years ago - but they are clearly doing something right. Mostly it’s been a question of asking the right questions and putting the accountability on the players.

I suspect in Bomb’s case, his transition to coaching was fairly easy, given status as a player who arrived as a senior International and mentor to the younger Quins props, only played for a short time but still established himself as a semi-mythical figure with his exceptional 78 minute performance on the loosehead side against Saints. He knows what he’s about in the scrum, and the players know it.

The appointment of Tabai Matson gives them a more experienced voice to help with both the players’ and coaches’ development, allowing Billy Millard to get back to running the whole playing organisation as General Manager.
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Post by king_carlos Mon 28 Jun 2021, 6:58 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:How do people feel about Adam Jones as a coach now? I know he was being questioned on here before, so thought I’d ask…

Well he must take some credit for what's happened at Quins for sure. What is he? Only scrum coach? If so...Quins scrum has went very well, but they have a good base. I suspect he does more than the scrum tbh.

Don't know, Jerry Flannery is there as well and presumably does the lineout (which was impressive). The work of the Quins forwards was exceptional but more tenacity and desire than organisation. It's hard to judge. Quins have some coaches who are relatively young in coaching terms but who had very careers and have massive knowledge of the game.

I think Matt Symons deserves some credit for Quins in the lineout. I've said it a few time but he's been quietly very good for them now he's settled. Not quite reached the heights we hoped when he first arrived in the Prem from Chiefs but he's a really good lock.

17 starts from 17 appearances and 1275 minutes played (so only been subbed off for 165 minutes total game time in 17 appearances) tells a story of a vital player.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 28 Jun 2021, 7:23 pm

Symons is viewed by the Quins coaches as their favourite kind of player - very close to international standard, but unlikely to get a call up. You need some superstars (and my word, we’ve unearthed some of those), but the bread and butter of success are the guys who consistently play well and don’t go gallivanting off to international duty.
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Post by Old Man Mon 28 Jun 2021, 9:28 pm

Nizaam Carr is going back to Wasps.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 28 Jun 2021, 9:50 pm

Old Man wrote:Nizaam Carr is going back to Wasps.

Good player and good signing for Wasps.

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Post by George Carlin Tue 29 Jun 2021, 7:14 am

Hearing a lot of chat about Scotland centre Huw Jones off to Quins.

Match made in heaven in terms of their playing styles. He has also deputised at full back a lot this season and offers a quality option there as well as at centre.
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Post by Poorfour Tue 29 Jun 2021, 8:10 am

George Carlin wrote:Hearing a lot of chat about Scotland centre Huw Jones off to Quins.

Match made in heaven in terms of their playing styles. He has also deputised at full back a lot this season and offers a quality option there as well as at centre.

The question for Quins is whether he can play 12. We’ve got at least 3 potential fullbacks and 2 very good outside centres already, but we’re losing a 12 and one of our others is out til March.
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Post by Oakdene Tue 29 Jun 2021, 9:35 am

Rugby Fan wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Seems to be a lot more grumbling on social media regarding a 4th placed team winning than in the past.

I don't like the play-off finish. However, if someone hasn't complained before, when anyone other than the team finishing top ends up as champion, then they can't have an issue when it happens to be the 4th placed side.

Just listening to Sean O'Brien and Alex Goode on the House of Rugby podcast. Suddenly, Adam Jones, who appeared on the previous show, called in from a pub, where he is obviously still celebrating. Sean O'Brien asked him where he was, then couldn't finish the podcast fast enough, to head off to join him.

Did you hear Jones say "and we did it without cheating!!" laughing laughing laughing

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 29 Jun 2021, 11:30 am

14 clubs from 22/23. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/57650212

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 29 Jun 2021, 11:34 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:14 clubs from 22/23. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/57650212
Just saw the pop-up from the BBC on my phone. No info yet.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 29 Jun 2021, 11:47 am

Poorfour wrote:Symons is viewed by the Quins coaches as their favourite kind of player - very close to international standard, but unlikely to get a call up. You need some superstars (and my word, we’ve unearthed some of those), but the bread and butter of success are the guys who consistently play well and don’t go gallivanting off to international duty.

Would you have Chisholm at 6 in that category?

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Post by Poorfour Tue 29 Jun 2021, 12:12 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Symons is viewed by the Quins coaches as their favourite kind of player - very close to international standard, but unlikely to get a call up. You need some superstars (and my word, we’ve unearthed some of those), but the bread and butter of success are the guys who consistently play well and don’t go gallivanting off to international duty.

Would you have Chisholm at 6 in that category?

Yes, if he can stay fit. I think he could have won some caps by now if he hadn't had long periods on the sidelines, but now there's a new generation coming through. Always very happy to see him on the pitch, though. He's got rugby brains in addition to his considerable brawn, as his first touch intervention in Bristol evidenced. And then there's the "surplus to international requirements category" of Louw, Lewies, Esterhuizen and Green - who would walk into a lot of teams, but not the Boks. And finally there is Marler, who on the basis of his last 180 minutes of game time is the form loosehead in world rugby but is currently only interested in playing for Quins and playing with his kids.
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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 29 Jun 2021, 12:39 pm

From the RFU:

The COVID Recovery Plan is aimed at improving the financial stability and sustainability of professional rugby during the next three seasons while also providing benefits for England Rugby and the community game.

The Covid Recovery Plan, with a temporary pause on relegation, follows a detailed consultation that was announced in February after the RFU Council voted in favour of no relegation from Gallagher Premiership Rugby or the Greene King IPA Championship for the 2020/21 Season. The extensive consultation included Premiership Rugby and their clubs, Championship clubs, The RPA, RFU Board and RFU Council.

The changes that will now be introduced include:

The expansion of the Premiership to 14 clubs at the end of the 2021/22 season through the promotion (subject to meeting the required minimum standards) of the winner of the Championship, while supporting player welfare by maintaining the maximum game play limits and guaranteed rest periods*.
Revised minimum standards criteria for clubs wishing to be promoted to the Premiership with wider game benefits such as financial sustainability, governance, player welfare, stadium facilities, medical provisions, safeguarding and community plans.
A 2022/23 season in which no side will be relegated from or promoted to the new 14-team Premiership, allowing clubs to plan with greater certainty and supporting the recently promoted clubs in making the transition between leagues.
A play-off in the 2023/24 season between the club finishing bottom of the Premiership and the winner of the Championship (subject to that club meeting the required minimum standards), with the result to decide which club plays in the Premiership during the following season.
From August 2024, the intention is to move to a position where there is a mandatory England Qualified Players (EQPs) system under which Premiership clubs must have a minimum of 15 EQPs in each match-day squad and the end of the foreign player rule to provide better England player development opportunities while giving greater flexibility for Premiership clubs to select non-EQP players of any nationality. There is further work to do to agree the detail of this subject to a new Professional Game Agreement (PGA) and introduction into regulation
Increased preparation time for the England men’s squad ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup as a result of an earlier end to the Premiership season in May 2023.
A commitment by the RFU and PRL to maintain current levels of funding to the Championship until the end of the PGA in 2024, providing a greater level of certainty for member clubs.
Changes after season 2023/24 will be subject to the agreement of a new PGA and the approval of the RFU Council.

Unless Council agrees otherwise, from season 2024/25, promotion and relegation between the Premiership & Championship will revert to being on an annual one-up, one-down basis.

Speaking about the vote RFU President, His Honour Jeff Blackett said: “I would like to thank my Council colleagues for their extensive debate and consultation around these structural changes for the next three seasons. Council has carefully considered how to ensure a healthy professional game to support successful winning England teams that generate income to support the game at all levels, while maintaining the integrity of future league structures. The changes will undoubtedly benefit the game of rugby in England as we recover from the effects of the pandemic.

“This is not ringfencing the Premiership as some have suggested. In three of the four seasons covered by this, and our previous decision, a Championship club will have the opportunity to be promoted. Council has control of what happens thereafter and is committed to maintaining the integrity of the league structure by ensuring that access to the Premiership will be retained in the future.

“I would also like to thank Government for their enormous support for the community game with rugby clubs in England having a significant boost through an allocation of £30 million of government funding, the biggest single investment in the community game, following collaboration between the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), Sport England, the RFU and the grassroots game.

“We are all looking forward to the start of next season and the welcome return of volunteers, players and fans.”

RATIONALE FOR COVID RECOVERY PLAN AND TEMPORARY PAUSE ON RELEGATION
The financial impact of Covid has led to a greater focus on the financial model of professional rugby clubs and the need to find a more sustainable solution to address financial losses while growing the game.

In 2017 the collective losses across PRL clubs exceeded £40m, in 2018 this rose to £50m, with further significant losses caused by Covid.

The extent of the financial disruption to the Premiership Clubs was such that they were required to obtain £88 million in loans through the Government’s Winter Sports Survival package.

Premiership rugby clubs are reliant on owners continuing to fund operational costs in the face of mounting losses. The fear of relegation and its significant economic consequences has in the past lead to short-term investment, further adding to losses. This is unsustainable and has been exacerbated by Covid.

Relegation from the Premiership costs a club at least £5m which has a very material effect on the ability of that club to finance its operations and has a significant impact on long term commercial partnerships.

Over the past 17 years 14 teams that have been relegated from the Premiership have been immediately promoted the following season. The only years when this didn’t happen were 2009/10 (Bristol/Exeter), 2011/12 (Leeds/London Welsh), and 2015/16 (London Welsh/Bristol). This ‘trend’ has further strengthened in recent years with eight teams over the past nine seasons winning immediate re-promotion.

London Welsh became insolvent chasing the Premiership ambition. Exeter is the only club from outside the Premiership in 12 years that has successfully been promoted to the Premiership and maintained its position there. Everyone across the game would like to encourage more Exeter examples and avoid another London Welsh situation which significantly damaged that club.

The financial and performance gap between Gallagher Premiership Rugby and Greene King IPA Championship rugby is significant. Despite funding to the Championship increasing by 67% to its peak in 2016/17, a non PRL shareholding team has not been promoted to the Premiership since 2014, that team was relegated the following season.

*noting that maximum game limits may change as scientific consensus evolves.

BENEFITS FOR PREMIERSHIP RUGBY CLUBS
With the context of Covid losses, a temporary pause on relegation will give club owners more certainty and stability to encourage strategic investment, attract long term partners and grow rugby union in England.

The proposal allows clubs to better control their costs. Without the constant threat of relegation, clubs will be able to promote academy players to a much greater extent, and not be so dependent on players, particularly foreign players, to provide a short-term solution. This can be seen in season 2020/21,

BENEFITS FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP CLUBS
In order to be able to achieve promotion a Championship club would require a multi-million-pound investment. There are a small number of Championship clubs with aspirations to play in the Premiership and more that don’t necessarily share that ambition.

The proposals mean a further season of stability for the Championship clubs with no relegation in 2020/21 and 2021/22. This will allow clubs to have more certainty and the opportunity to encourage long-term strategic planning, including for those with specific ambitions for promotion.

The RFU and PRL will commit to retaining current funding levels to the Championship until the end of the PGA) in 2023/24 providing more financial certainty to the clubs.

The RFU will work with the Championship clubs to review the format of the league and competition with the intention of developing a better model that can become more sustainable while still allowing clubs the opportunity to aspire to promotion to the Premiership should they wish to. A working group will consider opportunities and will report back to RFU Council by January 2022.

The Championship will still be a pathway for players, coaches and match officials but club aspirations don’t have to be interlinked; players can progress to their potential without the specific need for their club to be promoted.

Around half of the EPS squad in January 2021 had previously played for a Championship club (23 players), although of these players only one was not also registered with a RFU/Premiership academy during their time in the Championship.

BENEFITS FOR ENGLAND RUGBY
The proposals provide additional preparation time and more stability in the calendar for England men’s players in lead up to Rugby World Cup 2023 and a coherent season structure to allow for optimal preparation time for the RWC.

The proposals will facilitate and support strong club and country relationships, provide better player development opportunities for EQPs and ensures the EQP scheme and its importance. It will also provide stability in order to help define the role and purpose of the Greene King IPA Championship and other leagues such as National One and BUCS. As the Premiership expands in size, this is likely to result in a greater number of National One clubs being promoted at the end of season 21/22, which will also lessen the impact of relegation as a result of the introduction of the Future Competitions Structure. The structure will ensure a coherent pathway to develop players for the Premiership and England.

BENEFITS FOR THE COMMUNITY GAME AND FANS
Providing a period of greater stability for Gallagher Premiership and Greene King IPA Championship Clubs, together with growing England talent will help to increase the fan base for the game, and therefore revenues to be invested in the wider game as well as encouraging increased participation in community rugby.

The philosophy of minimum criteria is something that might be applied at appropriate levels within the community game in order to best balance the needs of clubs with the quality of experience for players and other participants and would need to be reviewed by RFU Council.

RUGBY FAN RESEARCH
To understand fan attitudes to the proposals the RFU conducted research among rugby fans** and found:

Close to two thirds (65%) of rugby union fans in England supported the proposals, five times more than the proportion against (13%). A further 22% of fans were unsure.

When asked why they support the proposals, fans gave the following reasons (they could select all that applied):

To support England Rugby and the development of its international players

67%

Protect the future of Premiership clubs

51%

To help grow the game of rugby in England

47%

Protect the future of RFU Championship clubs

23%

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 29 Jun 2021, 1:20 pm

So how will this work? Ealing were told that their ground is not of suitable standard for promotion this year - are they going to build a new stadium in the next 18 months?
Does London really need yet another Premiership club, particularly one that's four miles from London Irish, nine miles from Harlequins and ten miles from Saracens? How's that going to be viable?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 29 Jun 2021, 1:34 pm

Yeah there are few questions, on what the more stringent rules on promotion would entail and where things can be ignored. Saracens aren't able to meet the requirements on their ground for their promotion but that has been waived. They've been quick to say there will not be ringfencing but after the move to 14 there would be very few clubs wanting to be promoted anyway, but make those rules too strict and it will be ringfenced in anything but name.

The England qualified player minimum seems positive but could it just mean fewer quality foreign players; or does the promise of game time limits simply mean a bit more planning around similar levels of imports and more chance of the youngsters getting a game as with covid late last year? I'm not sure I'm that bothered that its London heavy, I've seen someone saying that Doncaster should be there rather than Ealing but they don't want it and it wouldn't be sustainable. Still having 1 up and 1 down though leaves a chink of light that if in the future some rich so and so bought a club and fancied spending it on a rugby club could still find their way up.

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 29 Jun 2021, 1:43 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Yeah there are few questions, on what the more stringent rules on promotion would entail and where things can be ignored. Saracens aren't able to meet the requirements on their ground for their promotion but that has been waived. They've been quick to say there will not be ringfencing but after the move to 14 there would be very few clubs wanting to be promoted anyway, but make those rules too strict and it will be ringfenced in anything but name.

The England qualified player minimum seems positive but could it just mean fewer quality foreign players; or does the promise of game time limits simply mean a bit more planning around similar levels of imports and more chance of the youngsters getting a game as with covid late last year? I'm not sure I'm that bothered that its London heavy, I've seen someone saying that Doncaster should be there rather than Ealing but they don't want it and it wouldn't be sustainable. Still having 1 up and 1 down though leaves a chink of light that if in the future some rich so and so bought a club and fancied spending it on a rugby club could still find their way up.

I assume it's to give a chink of light to Jersey/Pirates. Fully expect that it won't change anything except that it will be Ealing going down and alternating with another Championship club as the yo-yo. Suppose it provides stability for Worcester, Newcastle, and the other clubs that tend to be near the bottom.

Doncaster would be a good choice and if that Euromillions ever comes up it will happen ! Yahoo

What does worry me is that Ealing are totally reliant on a "sugar daddy"  and if that changes then it will be a London Welsh situation all over again.

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Post by lostinwales Tue 29 Jun 2021, 2:19 pm

Have they actually said who the 14th team will be?

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Post by king_carlos Tue 29 Jun 2021, 2:30 pm

On the surface the EQP targets becoming mandatory minimums and raising the target numbers seems great for English rugby but doing it too quickly will have negative effects in my opinion.

Firstly, by going up to 14 Premiership clubs the EQP numbers would rise anyway. Talent getting chances is great but at the end of the day the Championship, national leagues and England age grade side should be funneling talent down to the strongest options by the time they reach the Premiership. I'm not certain that minimum EQP requirements will actually lead to a flood of Marcus Smiths, Freddie Stewards and Jack Willis clones getting chances. I think it will lead to more EQP journeymen, which in turn will cause wage inflation for EQP journeymen. I just don't see how pushing clubs to have EQP squad filler will improve the national side and I think it will weaken the league.

Secondly, it will put pressure on dual qualified players to maintain EQP status even when England clearly have no interest. Someone in Josh Matavesi's situation for instance might be under a lot of pressure to not play for Fiji, remaining EQP, which could hamper T2 nations.

Thirdly, a mandatory limit per game rather than average over the season could lead to a situation where a couple of injuries to EQP players leaves a club having to put out much weaker sides just to hit limits. At Tigers for instance we frequently have both our starting props as EQP players between Genge, Heyes and Cole. If injuries strike then Francois van Wyk and Nephi Leatigaga are good replacements. But does our props no longer being EQP mean that maybe a world class hooker in Julian Montoya gets left out for Tom Youngs or Charlie Clare just to make up EQP numbers? Situations such as that weakens Tigers, weakens the Premiership and in no way strengthens the England team.

We've seen with Sarries and Sale how much overseas signings can do to help strengthen a club in short term so that they can build for the long term. Once clubs build that foundation they can then bring through talent. Sarries did it with George, Kruis, Itoje, Farrell, Earl, etc. Sale are now doing it with Curry x 2, James x 2, Rodd, Quirke.

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Post by Irish Londoner Tue 29 Jun 2021, 2:33 pm

lostinwales wrote:Have they actually said who the 14th team will be?

No but Ealing have the most money so it's likely to be them - they finished above Saracens in the league this season.

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Post by Rugby Fan Tue 29 Jun 2021, 3:48 pm

On the BBC podcast, Chris Ashton says he found out his short stint at Quins means he will get a Premiership winners medal. As he also gets a Premiership Rugby Cup winners medal, for Sale's win last September, he has had a good twelve months by not playing for winning sides.

Eggchasers were wondering whether Gustard is entitled to a medal after the Quins win. If Ashton gets one, them he probably is.

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Post by lostinwales Tue 29 Jun 2021, 10:39 pm

Irish Londoner wrote:
lostinwales wrote:Have they actually said who the 14th team will be?

No but Ealing have the most money so it's likely to be them - they finished above Saracens in the league this season.

I understand I think. Next season there will be 13 teams. 22-23 there will be 14 teams with the winner of next year's championship going up. So there is an extra year for whoever is to follow Saracens into the premiership

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 29 Jun 2021, 11:25 pm

To me this means there is a very low chance of promotion of a Championship club.  So the league is 90%+ ring fenced.  

First off, I think the chances of the best Championship team beating a Premiership team in a playoff, regardless how poorly they performed in the Premiership, is not good.  Plus I wonder if any Championship clubs have a combination of the financial backing, stadium and other infrastructure which is required for promotion?

So the Premiership can tell everyone they have promotion/relegation, but I think it will be a rare occurrence.

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Post by lostinwales Wed 30 Jun 2021, 8:40 am

doctor_grey wrote:To me this means there is a very low chance of promotion of a Championship club.  So the league is 90%+ ring fenced.  

First off, I think the chances of the best Championship team beating a Premiership team in a playoff, regardless how poorly they performed in the Premiership, is not good.  Plus I wonder if any Championship clubs have a combination of the financial backing, stadium and other infrastructure which is required for promotion?

So the Premiership can tell everyone they have promotion/relegation, but I think it will be a rare occurrence.

Yes but there is room for one more team at the top table. Long term you are right but then there is the question of how championship teams can cope with the expense of going up to the premiership.

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Post by MichaelT Wed 30 Jun 2021, 8:45 am

Isn't the play-off for one year only, and then its normal relegation - one up one down.


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Post by No 7&1/2 Wed 30 Jun 2021, 8:56 am

Yes, 'Unless Council agrees otherwise, from season 2024/25, promotion and relegation between the Premiership & Championship will revert to being on an annual one-up, one-down basis.'

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Post by GeordieFalcon Wed 30 Jun 2021, 9:18 am

doctor_grey wrote:To me this means there is a very low chance of promotion of a Championship club.  So the league is 90%+ ring fenced.  

First off, I think the chances of the best Championship team beating a Premiership team in a playoff, regardless how poorly they performed in the Premiership, is not good.  Plus I wonder if any Championship clubs have a combination of the financial backing, stadium and other infrastructure which is required for promotion?

So the Premiership can tell everyone they have promotion/relegation, but I think it will be a rare occurrence.

Well in one positive, it does safeguard against another London Welsh fiasco.

Promotion chasing teams will need to have their house in order, and going forward (Ealing excepted) will need a good support base.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Wed 30 Jun 2021, 9:19 am

i wonder what impact have 15EQ in a matchday of 23 will have.

Kolpack is ended so it'll be any nationality....

What if you lose 5 / 6 English players to the national teams. You then need to replace them with more EQ players.
Is that no an issue or could it become an issue?

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 30 Jun 2021, 10:41 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:i wonder what impact have 15EQ in a matchday of 23 will have.

Kolpack is ended so it'll be any nationality....

What if you lose 5 / 6 English players to the national teams. You then need to replace them with more EQ players.
Is that no an issue or could it become an issue?

I imagine it will become an issue as KC has pointed out. Happy times for EQ journeymen who will now be in ever increasing demand as you don't want to be in a position where you are facing academy tight five player or dropping a star non-EQ name so that you can put in some experienced cover to the tight exchanges.

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