The last time the Heineken Cup final was held in Dublin it featured two French teams. Toulouse beat Perpignan on that occasion, and with the Top 14’s two leading sides in action this weekend it could be another all-French affair this May.
The Heineken Cup has reached the quarter final stage and sees three sides from France, three from England and two from Ireland battling it out to reach the last four.
The Irish sides both face tough away trips to English opposition while two strong French sides will expect to reach the semi-finals with home advantage.
The Heineken Cup has now become the competition to win in world club rugby. It’s the eighteenth season of the tournament and twenty four sides from across Europe begin their campaign in November on the long road to Dublin in May 2013.
It’s the 17th Heineken Cup Final this weekend and it’s an all Irish affair as Leinster face Ulster. You’d have got long odds on this match-up before the tournament began, with Ulster ranked as 66/1 outsiders to lift the trophy back in November.
Leinster are in their third final in four years and are favourites to become the first team to retain the Cup since the Leicester Tigers in 2002. However, could Ulster upset the odds at Twickenham on Saturday?
The 17th Heineken Cup reaches the semi-final stage this weekend with two intriguing matches. Of the five pre-tournament favourites, only one remains in what has been a competition full of upsets and surprises.
Can Edinburgh become the first Scottish side to reach the Heineken Cup final? Can Ulster reach their first final since 1999? And can Leinster navigate a tricky tie in France to reach their third final in four years?
There are a couple of belting matches to look forward to this weekend as four of this season’s ‘big five’ meet on Sunday.
First up, Manchester City provide the biggest test of Spurs’ Premier League title credentials so far as the two sides meet at Eastlands. It’s arguably the perfect time to be playing City considering they are missing several key players through injury, suspension and international call-ups. Spurs can take a giant stride towards their first league title in decades with a win at 3/1, but I fancy the home side to prevail at 10/11.
Manchester City were finally beaten in the Premier League on Monday and Roberto Mancini’s side face another tricky game on Sunday afternoon. They host Arsenal who are on a good run of form although at home City should have enough. The 9/2 on Arsenal will tempt many, though.
The big game in the Premier League is on Monday night as Manchester City take their unbeaten league record to Chelsea. Andre Villas-Boas’ side have continued to struggle in the league although they will be buoyed by their win at Newcastle last time out. City look a cut above the London side, though, and should be backed at 7/4.
The 17th Heineken Cup kicked off last weekend with all the thrills, spills and drama we’ve come to expect from Europe’s leading club competition. The favourites got off to a winning start whilst the reigning champions managed a last gasp equaliser with the last kick of their game.
What can we expect in the second round of matches this weekend?
The Premier League returns this weekend with a couple of interesting matches that pit promoted sides against the title hopefuls.
Norwich City have acquitted themselves well since their return to the top flight and Paul Lambert’s side welcome Arsenal in Saturday’s early kick-off.
The 17th Heineken Cup gets under way this weekend as 24 teams from across the continent begin their challenge for the biggest price in European club rugby.
The action starts on Friday night with some intriguing fixtures involving some of the tournament underdogs and a couple of the Cup favourites.