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Future of the Pro 14 and possibility of a B&I league

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    #16
    Originally posted by Piquet View Post
    If this were to be a goer, it would be a 24 team, two division League. Fourteen English and Ten non-English teams.

    The Top division would consist of the top six in each league, in other words, the qualifiers for the HC. As things stand, that would be Leinster, Ulster, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Llanelli, Munster, Exter, Northampton, Gloucester, Sale, Bristol and Bath.

    How many of those of us based in Ireland would travel to any of those away games, given that there would be at least one prospective trip and possibly two in the HC as well?

    The Second Division would be Dragons, The Ospreys, Connacht Cardiff, Worcester, Harlequins, Wasps, London Irish, Leicester and Saracens (he he), Newcastle and the Cornish Pirates.

    Not too many attractive games there.
    Even if it were possible to consistently get the diaspora to travel (and many of us would), can you imagine how that proposed first division would go down in the RFU- no London/Home counties team in the top division, and, depending on whether there would be promotion relegation (and the number moving), the prospect of it taking several years for Quins, Wasps, Sarries, Leicester to get back to top class rugby? While, alas, TV revenues would speak louder than attendances (and still less travelling fans), the South East is still where the bulk of that audience is.

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      #17
      If this was to happen, there is no way that the Welsh would maintain 4 teams. They'd cut it down to three or even two so they could afford to stock the teams with talent. That in and of itself brings up another issue, would this proposed league have a salary cap ? If so, how would that work with the current system of central contracting? Do those count against the cap or would there be a marquee player rule like the GP has ? A team like Leinster wouldn't be able to keep all that talent on the books in a capped league. They're not all that much different than Saracens in that they have test level players as starters and backups. The groans coming form their supporters would be unending.

      In all honesty, both the Welsh and English have managed to turn their pro teams into financial messes and the IRFU should have no qualms about telling them to take a hike if they want to combine leagues.

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        #18
        A lot of good reasons not to do it, and I hope we don’t, but I wonder what CVC are cooking up.

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          #19
          Originally posted by Munsterboy View Post
          A lot of good reasons not to do it, and I hope we don’t, but I wonder what CVC are cooking up.
          The CVC thing is being overblown. They have a minority stake in each league and don't have control over the organisation or competition format for either.

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            #20
            Originally posted by Wallyman View Post

            The CVC thing is being overblown. They have a minority stake in each league and don't have control over the organisation or competition format for either.
            I hear you but it’s not about control, it’s about what kind of commercial proposition they can come up with that might turn the heads of clubs and unions alike.

            They’re looking after that side of things and that’s how they make back the money they invested. If they think they can deliver a lot more from a B&I league they’ll push it and wave wads of cash under everybody’s noses. It’s possibly why they took stakes in both competitions.

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              #21
              Originally posted by Wallyman View Post

              The CVC thing is being overblown. They have a minority stake in each league and don't have control over the organisation or competition format for either.
              Not yet, but to think that they didn't pour that money in with a plan to eventually acquire a controlling interest or at least a large say in what goes on in both is wishful thinking. They are going to push to maximize profits above all else.

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                #22
                CVC ruined F1. Horrible people and rugby should’ve stayed away from the shower. The welsh can also piss off with their constant longing to be England’s little brother.

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                  #23
                  Originally posted by Dowlinz View Post
                  I've always defended the league but the last couple of seasons have seen it dip to such lows that I think it's now beyond the point of salvaging. The Welsh were always a problem but the recent decline of Glasgow along with the Cheetahs and Kings not holding their best players and effectively being treated like a real estate open house for showcasing SA players to European teams has made it a difficult competition to care about.
                  The conference structure has also made it too easy to target games and wave the white flag at anything remotely challenging to a point where we've seen barely anyone in the past two years except for Leinster travel to Thomond with any even remote intention of actually trying to win the game.

                  I'm not sure what's next but it's time to push for something new since the Irish provinces are all in a reasonably healthy, well supported state and it's time to act before they're dragged into the same mire as the other teams around them.
                  Glasgow were in the final last season(having won their conference) and made it to the QFs of the HEC. The year before, they won their conference and had a home SF. This season they lost their first 3 games on the trot largely due to RWC squad losses. I think talk of decline is premature, but Rennie being a lame duck might prove you correct.

                  Edinburgh, tried and succeeded in beating you in Thomond this year and I reckon I reckon Glasgow will need the points and they gave you a run for your money last season.

                  Re the conferecnes, A B&I league will most defnitely include some form of conferencing so that's not going away. IMO, likely English and Celtic FWIW. ANd the existing dynamic of crap Welsh teams won't change without either a massive injection of funds or the amalgamation of some of their teams.

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                    #24
                    Originally posted by paddy0090 View Post

                    Glasgow were in the final last season(having won their conference) and made it to the QFs of the HEC. The year before, they won their conference and had a home SF. This season they lost their first 3 games on the trot largely due to RWC squad losses. I think talk of decline is premature, but Rennie being a lame duck might prove you correct.

                    Edinburgh, tried and succeeded in beating you in Thomond this year and I reckon I reckon Glasgow will need the points and they gave you a run for your money last season.

                    Re the conferecnes, A B&I league will most defnitely include some form of conferencing so that's not going away. IMO, likely English and Celtic FWIW. ANd the existing dynamic of crap Welsh teams won't change without either a massive injection of funds or the amalgamation of some of their teams.
                    Edinburghs first team just about beat Munsters second string in Cork.

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                      #25
                      Originally posted by dropkick View Post
                      If the English teams want to expand to a B&I league then it'll be the Irish teams they need. Teaming up with the Welsh means the English clubs will have to subsidise the Welsh regions. That certainly ain't going to happen. I can see them using the Welsh as bait though by threatening an Anglo-Welsh league which would mean we would possibly have to join up too.

                      If there is to be a B&I league I would hope for divisions rather than conferences and let the Welsh regions go where they belong.

                      I don't think it will happen anyway. The clubs and unions don't see eye to eye.
                      The Pro14 is having a bad season but it's also world cup year. Overall the Pro14 has been steadily growing. Some teams have gotten worse, like Glasgow but others (Edinburgh, Benetton, Ulster, Cheetahs) have gotten better.
                      I dont see it happening but no why would English prefer us to Welsh sides.
                      I wouldnt want divisions as I wouldnt want to lose out on any Irish games and risk of relegation wouldnt make it worth it. Irish prov9nces would end up in second division at some stage may way.

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