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European Rugby Cups 2014-2015 Round 1 Predictions

The first block of domestic rugby is now over and we kick off the two new European Rugby competitions. Here are my predictions.

First up here are the links to my previews for the competitions:

European Rugby Champions Cup 2014-2015 Preview

European Rugby Challenge Cup 2014-2015 Preview

Quick disclaimer, I don’t follow the Pro12 or Top14 and so there is a larger element of guessing than usual, especially when we come to the lower teams.

European Rugby Champions Cup 2014-2015 Round 1 Predictions

Harlequins v Castres

Edit – Got my teams mixed up and obviously Castres are really 12th. Since they will be more focused on the domestic front I should have gone for Quins.

Castres are leading the Top14 where as Quins have had a poor start to the season by their standards. So even though French clubs don’t travel well I’m going for Castres for this one.

Castres win

Sale Sharks v Munster

Sale are another team that have had a tough start to the season and whilst Munster are not fully up to speed either I think the Irishmen will take this one.

Munster win

Saracens v Clermont Auvergn

OK I know that I have gone for Clermont in my preview but traveling to Saracens is always difficult. Added to that, I don’t think that any of the teams play on 4G pitches in France yet, so I’m going with the home team.

Saracens win

Glasgow Warriors v Bath

Glasgow are a good side and I underestimated them last season in the HC. Bath also are not the same team on the road and so another home win here.

Glasgow win

Racing Metro 92 v Northampton Saints

French teams are difficult to beat at home but even so I think that the English champions will have enough to come home with a victory here.

Saints win

Leicester Tigers v Ulster

Tigers are at home and they are starting to improve, but they still have a whole bunch of injuries. Ulster have started the season OK so I think they’ll be able to get an early march on Tigers and head home with an early win.

Ulster win

Ospreys v Benetton Treviso

Treviso have been awful the season and they are having to travel so Ospreys get an easy win here and should get the TBP.

Ospreys win

Toulouse v Montpellier

Everybody was writing Toulouse off but a couple of wins on the trot mean that they are heading into the European games with some form. Clearly these two sides know each other well but I’m going with the European aristocrats on their home turf.

Toulouse win

Toulon v Scarlets

Easy one here, I think the champions have a good chance of going back to back so clearly a win over Scarlets.

Toulon win

Leinster v Wasps

Wasps have already been talking about the extra strain on their squad, so travelling to one of the top European sides is always going to be a big ask. Leinster to win this one.

Leinster win

European Rugby Challenge Cup 2014-2015 Round 1 Predictions

Gloucester Rugby v Brive

Gloucester are starting to look like they know who they are playing with, where as Brive are much more concerned about being at the wrong end of the Top14 table. Gloucester to take a relatively easy one at home.

Gloucester win

Newcastle Falcons v Bucharest Wolves

Falcons get the opportunity to post a cricket score, a nice confidence booster and reward for their crowd after having to watch so many losses on the trot.

Newcastle win

Bordeaux Begles v Edinburgh

Bordeaux have the class to win this tournament. They are doing great in the Top 14 and as long as they take Europe seriously will win this one.

Bordeaux win

Lyon v London Welsh

I have gone for Lyon but they haven’t been setting the world alight. This could be the chance for Welsh to pick up a moral boosting victory which they very much need. But will they be holding player back for training? Either way a trip to France is never easy and I think Lyon will take the victory.

Lyon win

Cardiff Blues v Grenoble

Cardiff have had a poor start to the season and so I’m going for Grenoble even on the Cardiff 4G pitch. This is all presuming that Grenoble take Europe seriously.

Grenoble win

Zebre v US Oyonnax

Zebre have been better but they are still only not bottom of the Pro12 due to Treviso being worse than they are. Oyonnax should get a win on the road.

US Oyonnax win

Connacht Rugby v La Rochelle

Connacht have darted the season well and the big question is about squad depth, can they fight one more than two fronts and will they even try? I’m still going for the Irish men in this one.

Connacht win

Bayonne v Exeter Chiefs

Bayonne have had an OK start to the season but Exeter have had a good one. I’m going to back the away win even though it is going to be a tough trip for the Chiefs. One of the things I’m banking on is Bayonne wanting to concentrate on domestic matters.

Chiefs win

Stade Francais v Newport Gwent Dragons

The Parisian playboys against the weakest Welsh region. Stade France it is.

Stade Francais win

London Irish v Rugby Rovigo

Irish vrs who??? This one is a cricket score and 5 points for Irish.

Irish win

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2 thoughts on “European Rugby Cups 2014-2015 Round 1 Predictions

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  1. “This could be the chance for Welsh to pick up a moral boosting victory which they very much need. But will they be holding player *snack* for training?”

    That would certainly explain a lot…

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