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The Future of the Heineken Cup In Doubt?

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    God, this week has taken its toll. I'm slow. I only noticed now: what RFU CEO Ritchie DOESN'T say.

    We are, and always have been, supportive of the Premiership clubs seeking greater meritocracy across the competitions and appropriate financial distribution. It is also important to ensure that rugby across Europe continues to thrive and grow. In terms of authorising any future competition, it is critical to see all the confirmed details before being able to assess its merits
    http://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/r...er-rfu-5960181

    Revenue; meritocracy. No mention at all of supportive on structure, or governance, or competition.
    Ceterum censeo INM irrumandum esse.

    Comment


      Originally posted by Munsterboy View Post
      Yes, you can. The NFL has had 7 different winners in the last 10 years because they do have very simple ways of forcing competition, like the draft and the salary cap and salary floor. It's good for everybody. Wiping out the weak until there are only a few left is self-defeating.

      Honestly, do you actually think about or research this stuff at all or just spout whatever pops into your head?
      No I don't research NFL, not sure why / how you think its relevant. There is no prospect of a draft system so why the hell would I bother.
      My computer thinks I'm gay
      What's the difference anyway
      When all the people do all day
      Is stare into a phone

      Comment


        Originally posted by sewa View Post
        No I don't research NFL, not sure why / how you think its relevant. There is no prospect of a draft system so why the hell would I bother.
        If there are no draft systems in place in Europe next season, I am going to make a fortune selling widgets.

        Comment


          Gerry Thornley has a very interesting article in this morning's Times:

          • "The English and French clubs have always agitated for more power and money (the kernel of the rift)"



          • Things are different now from what they were in 2007, when the agreement was last negotiated.



          • The English and French Clubs are " buoyed by the emergence of rival pay-per-view sports channels in the shape of BT Sport and, in France, the Qatar-owned beIN Sport"



          • "there is an increased feeling within the upper echelons of the French clubs that that they could do without Europe. It would free up nine weekends of an over-crowded itinerary, and even provide scope for an expansion to a Top 16"



          • Syd Millar of the IRB stepped in to facilitate an agreement then but there is a "deafening silence " from the IRB now.



          • "the RFU have little stomach for taking on their clubs, all the more so as their primary concern is a smooth build-up to the 201 World Cup.



          • No HC next season would "“effectively call into question the viability of professional rugby outside France and England within Europe, and if that happens it calls into question the future of the Six Nationschampionship and international rugby.” said Phillip Browne of the IRFU"



          • "Leinster have suggested a revised qualification format of the top seven teams in the Premiership and Top 14, the top eight in the Rabo Pro12 and the winners of the Heineken and Amlin Cups. Within this framework, a qualifier from each of the four countries in the Rabo Pro12 could be enshrined, meaning that a place in the top five would ensure qualification."



          • "more English and French clubs have fallen into the hands of millionaire businessmen....... These businessmen are not inclined to tug the forelock toward unions or federations."



          • "the Ligue Nationale de Rugby chairman Paul Goze said: “We’re not threatening not to participate in the European Cup – we’re saying we will not participate. ……….. Nobody can prevent us from establishing a new competition. The presidents of our Top 14 clubs have all given us their approval, which is why we can stand together on this. The English are on the same wavelength.” "



          • "on Thursday, the chairman of Premiership Rugby Quentin Smith re-affirmed their desire to start up a new competition under their auspices and to leave the ERC umbrella regardless, and concluded: “What ERC should be doing is to concentrate on running the Heineken and Amlin Challenge Cups this season as successfully as they can and then a mechanism for running itself down because there will no longer be a need for it.” And Smith is a professional mediator." (this poster's emphasis)



          • Browne of the IRFU again “My view is that if we have to be locked into a room for two days to sort it out then lock us in for two days to sort it out.” In other words, no more 1pm deadlines as those around the table have flights to catch."



          • "The current impasse is crying out for intervention from the RFU and FFR or, failing that, from the IRB, because if the IRB don’t get this right they and the unions will have effectively lost control of the game for ever more."
          Last edited by Piquet; 14th-September-2013, 11:57.

          Comment


            Weeeeellll... Not so much "facilitate" as "tell them to STFU and get back in there or there'd be slaps".

            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/rug...l-say-IRB.html

            http://www.munsterfans.com/threads/3...ful-Syd-Millar

            Gosper, as you can see above, has said that the IRB support a continued HEC, and that negotiations with BOTH sides compromising should continue - which echoes, I'd say too exactly for coincidence, what Lewis and the ERC are saying.

            Rees is interesting this morning, given his role as unofficial PRL spokesgimp.

            http://www.theguardian.com/sport/201...p-heineken-cup
            Ceterum censeo INM irrumandum esse.

            Comment


              Originally posted by Piquet View Post
              Gerry Thornley has a very interesting article in this morning's Times:

              • "The English and French clubs have always agitated for more power and money (the kernel of the rift)"



              • Things are different now from what they were in 2007, when the agreement was last negotiated.



              • The English and French Clubs are " buoyed by the emergence of rival pay-per-view sports channels in the shape of BT Sport and, in France, the Qatar-owned beIN Sport"



              • "there is an increased feeling within the upper echelons of the French clubs that that they could do without Europe. It would free up nine weekends of an over-crowded itinerary, and even provide scope for an expansion to a Top 16"



              • Syd Millar of the IRB stepped in to facilitate an agreement then but there is a "deafening silence " from the IRB now.



              • "the RFU have little stomach for taking on their clubs, all the more so as their primary concern is a smooth build-up to the 201 World Cup.



              • No HC next season would "“effectively call into question the viability of professional rugby outside France and England within Europe, and if that happens it calls into question the future of the Six Nationschampionship and international rugby.” said Phillip Browne of the IRFU"



              • "Leinster have suggested a revised qualification format of the top seven teams in the Premiership and Top 14, the top eight in the Rabo Pro12 and the winners of the Heineken and Amlin Cups. Within this framework, a qualifier from each of the four countries in the Rabo Pro12 could be enshrined, meaning that a place in the top five would ensure qualification."



              • "more English and French clubs have fallen into the hands of millionaire businessmen....... These businessmen are not inclined to tug the forelock toward unions or federations."



              • "the Ligue Nationale de Rugby chairman Paul Goze said: “We’re not threatening not to participate in the European Cup – we’re saying we will not participate. ……….. Nobody can prevent us from establishing a new competition. The presidents of our Top 14 clubs have all given us their approval, which is why we can stand together on this. The English are on the same wavelength.” "



              • "on Thursday, the chairman of Premiership Rugby Quentin Smith re-affirmed their desire to start up a new competition under their auspices and to leave the ERC umbrella regardless, and concluded: “What ERC should be doing is to concentrate on running the Heineken and Amlin Challenge Cups this season as successfully as they can and then a mechanism for running itself down because there will no longer be a need for it.” And Smith is a professional mediator." (this poster's emphasis)



              • Browne of the IRFU again “My view is that if we have to be locked into a room for two days to sort it out then lock us in for two days to sort it out.” In other words, no more 1pm deadlines as those around the table have flights to catch."



              • "The current impasse is crying out for intervention from the RFU and FFR or, failing that, from the IRB, because if the IRB don’t get this right they and the unions will have effectively lost control of the game for ever more."
              This is the nub of the matter. We are now down to the wire. The IRB are either wily old foxes, allowing the upstarts to play themselves out with their endless propaganda campaign and will then step in at the end to put manners on them and restore order, or alternatively, they simply don't know what to do with them! If it's the latter, then rugby in the NH will be solely based on the demands of the English & French professional rugby clubs, the rest can go back to being amateur with ad hoc internationals being played on the back pitch in Donnybrook. RFU don't want to upset the PLR before the World Cup whereas the reality is that if they don't impose their authority then the next RWC will be their swansong, they won't be relevant after it! We are being held to ransom in a straight fight between cosy cartels of professional club owners in England and France on the one part and their respective Unions with the IRB on the other. Someone else's fight is going to screw us one way or the other!
              Mumha Abu

              Comment


                Getting very worried about this mess now. Could someone please,please, PLEASE! just step in and safe the best sporting competition in the world?!?!?
                "I don't have to outrun the bear, I just have to outrun you."

                Comment


                  First, hello everyone.Sorry for my English, but I'm French.
                  Originally posted by rathbaner View Post
                  FFR will not allow French clubs to be part of a non sanctioned competition and remain in the French league. That's a non starter. So the French clubs need critical mass to swing behind any new comp- if this latest proposal is serious. Let's assume they have all the french clubs all the English Clubs and all the Welsh regions. They then need one more union from the 6N. With that they could go to the IRB with a reasonable case.But if it's a showdown between the FFR and the French clubs, the FFR will win.
                  I think you overestimate the power of the FFR.First, FFR doesn't have much money, because it doesn't have its own stadium.So it gives little money to clubs for the international players, unlike in England with the RFU. And FFR will have to renegotiate the agreement in a few months.Secondly FFR has signed an agreement that gives all power to LNR to govern the professional rugby in France.This agreement is recognized by the French government. It means FFR couldn't prevent anything, and that it will never have players under contract like in Ireland.Thirdly the very vast majority of rugby fans in France support the LNR.The H-Cup is not love in my country for several reasons. And we even would prefer no competition to the existing one.
                  Originally posted by rathbaner View Post
                  The English are in a hole as presicted. That's why the English were talking up the Saffa so recently.
                  Yes it's apparently a solution to play with South Africa.

                  Comment


                    I am quite sure it will all be sorted. Money talks and no rugby = no money
                    My computer thinks I'm gay
                    What's the difference anyway
                    When all the people do all day
                    Is stare into a phone

                    Comment


                      What about Leinster's proposal (above) of 7, 7 and 8 +2 ?

                      Last year's Rabo table would have the top Eight qualifying, Ulster, Leinster, Glasgow, Scarlets, Ospreys, Munster, Treviso and Connacht.

                      The two extra places would go to the eighth French Team (Bayonne) and Cardiff ( the highest non qualified team in the ERC Rankings)

                      Under the 6+6+6+2 proposal, The top 5 plus Treviso would qualify: Ulster, Leinster, Glasgow, Scarlets, Ospreys and Treviso.
                      The two extra places would go to Munster and the Seventh French team (USAP).

                      Munster would have qualified because Leinster won the Amlin. The shame of it.
                      Last edited by Piquet; 14th-September-2013, 12:40.

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by sewa View Post
                        I am quite sure it will all be sorted. Money talks and no rugby = no money
                        I wouldn't be so sure.You are not in a strong position to negociate. If there is no H-cup, you die.We will survive and become even bigger.This conflict is the result of several years of stagnation. And the trigger of this boycott is the election of Jean-Pierre Lux.

                        Comment


                          Jos: Statut 7 (p.39), Statut 11 (p.57), Reglement 13 (p.227) Reglement 16 (p.237).

                          http://www.irb.com/mm/Document/About...nueldelIRB.pdf
                          Ceterum censeo INM irrumandum esse.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by Jos View Post
                            First, hello everyone.Sorry for my English, but I'm French.I think you overestimate the power of the FFR.First, FFR doesn't have much money, because it doesn't have its own stadium.So it gives little money to clubs for the international players, unlike in England with the RFU. And FFR will have to renegotiate the agreement in a few months.Secondly FFR has signed an agreement that gives all power to LNR to govern the professional rugby in France.This agreement is recognized by the French government. It means FFR couldn't prevent anything, and that it will never have players under contract like in Ireland.Thirdly the very vast majority of rugby fans in France support the LNR.The H-Cup is not love in my country for several reasons. And we even would prefer no competition to the existing one.Yes it's apparently a solution to play with South Africa.

                            The IRB can stop the tournament too. And if it does go ahead what the IRB can do is lengthen the period of that club players have to be released for international rugby. Thats just 1 thing. They can limit the number of games players play per season.


                            The FFR may or may not be able to stop the clubs but they could always set up a few regional sides. It sounds unlikely but professional rugby isn't that old and things are changing fast.


                            If the H-Cup isn't loved in France I'd hate to see what the French think of an Anglo French competition. I doubt it would last long.


                            As for the Pro 12 teams. We could have more international matches to make up the loss of the H-Cup. Maybe a rugby championship style, home and away tournament involving Ireland, Wales, Italy and Scotland. That would be a far greater threat to the FFR and RFU than their clubs.


                            The South Africans have just signed an agreement to have a 6th team in Super rugby. Also their rugby season is different so theres no fear of them joining up for a long time.

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by The Outlaw View Post
                              They have seven wins including the 2004 season. Since then they have 4 wins.

                              You can't come up with even one coherent reason as to why they should be in a revamped HEC except that "they are Italian". And we must keep them competitive

                              Its no wonder really the French and English want out.
                              Arguing Treviso v Connacht is like arguing Yaris v Fiat 500. It isn't the defining issue here.

                              Comment


                                There's a very simple way for the IRB or the RFU or the FFR to stop this new tournament. They can forbid their employees, the refs from officiating at any games. Let's see the PRL and the LNR get around that one.

                                Comment

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