Glasgow Warriors draw champions Exeter Chiefs
Glasgow Warriors have been drawn against the reigning champions Exeter Chiefs and French TOP 14 side Lyon, in Pool B, for the forthcoming Heineken Champions Cup.
The visit of Exeter later in the season will mark a return to Scotstoun Stadium for Exeter and Scotland full-back Stuart Hogg and lock Jonny Gray. It’s also the fourth time since season 2013/14 that Glasgow have been drawn alongside Exeter in the pool stages.
At a packed Scotstoun Stadium in January, the most recent outing between these two sides was a dramatic affair. With the game ending in a 31-all draw Glasgow just fell short of the knock out stages, despite throwing everything at their opponents.
Glasgow Warriors last met Lyon in the 2018/19 competition and on that occasion came away with home and away victories, including a convincing 42-22 win in Lyon. This past season, Lyon finished fourth in the 2019/20 TOP 14.
Glasgow Warriors Head Coach, Danny Wilson, told glasgowwarriors.org, “Europe is about pitting yourself against the best and taking on the current Heineken Champions Cup and Gallagher Premiership winners, Exeter, will allow us to do just that.
“Being drawn against Europe’s form team and another physical side, in Lyon, will require us to be at our very best.
“We’re looking forward to the challenge.”
It is expected that all Heineken Champions Cup games in December 2020 and January 2021 will be played behind closed doors. Fixtures and kick-off times will be released soon. The competition is expected to begin on Friday 11 December.
New tournament format
The previously announced new tournament format will see 24 clubs made up of eight representatives from each of the Gallagher Premiership, the Guinness PRO14 and the TOP 14 drawn into two pools of 12 – Pool A and Pool B.
The clubs ranked numbers 1 and 2 in their leagues were in Tier 1 for the purposes of the draw, the clubs ranked numbers 3 and 4 were in Tier 2, the clubs ranked 5 and 6 were in Tier 3, and the clubs ranked 7 and 8 were in Tier 4.
Once the two pools are constituted, the new format demands that clubs will only play against opposition which has been drawn into the same pool, and in addition, clubs from the same league will not play against one another.
In order to create the fixtures, clubs in Tier 1 will play against clubs in Tier 4 and clubs in Tier 2 will play clubs in Tier 3. Each club will have four pool stage matches – two home and two away – and the new format will include an expanded knockout stage with quarter-finals.
Glasgow Warriors were in Tier 4 and were drawn against Tier 1 clubs from the Gallagher Premiership and TOP 14.
The other clubs in Pool B are, Ulster Rugby, Gloucester Rugby, Toulouse, Bristol Bears, Racing 92, Munster Rugby, ASM Clermont Auvergne, and Connacht Rugby.
Pool A includes, Wasps, Bordeaux-Bègles, Leinster, Northampton Saints, Montpellier, Dragons, Bath Rugby, RC Toulon, Edinburgh, Sale Sharks, La Rochelle, and Scarlets.
The top four clubs from each pool will secure their places in the quarter-finals with the clubs ranked fifth to eighth qualifying for the Round of 16 of the Challenge Cup.
2020/21 season weekends
Round 1 – 11/12/13 December 2020
Round 2 – 18/19/20 December 2020
Round 3 – 15/16/17 January 2021
Round 4 – 22/23/24 January 2021
Heineken Champions Cup quarter-finals, 1st leg – 2/3/4 April 2021
Challenge Cup Round of 16 – 2/3/4 April 2021
Heineken Champions Cup quarter-finals, 2nd leg – 9/10/11 April 2021
Challenge Cup quarter-finals – 9/10/11 April 2021
Semi-finals – 30 April – 1/2 May 2021
2021 finals – Stade Vélodrome, Marseille
Challenge Cup final – Friday 21 May
Heineken Champions Cup final – Saturday 22 May