Championship stars ready to lock horns in latest European action

There will be Guinness Six Nations stars everywhere you look this weekend, as the second part of the Heineken Champions Cup double-header leaves us with wall-to-wall rugby right across the weekend.

There will be Guinness Six Nations stars everywhere you look this weekend, as the second part of the Heineken Champions Cup double-header leaves us with wall-to-wall rugby right across the weekend.

After the European action got going last weekend, there will be plenty of teams gunning for redemption, while others will already have their eyes on qualifying for the knockout phases next year.

Remember, there is a different format this year with two 12-team pools, and just four fixtures apiece, with the highest four ranked sides from each pool progressing to the quarter-finals, so there’s everything to play for.

With thrills and spills aplenty expected across the continent, you can be assured that the action will be relentless, and we have got you covered if you’re searching for where your favourite stars will be.


Montpellier vs Wasps (KO 20:00 UK)

Guinness Six Nations veteran Louis Picamoles will be among the starters for the French side against Wasps in the only top-tier European action remaining on Friday evening after the postponement of Scarlets v Toulon, while 2019 debutant Arthur Vincent will also be in action.

Lee Blackett has rested a lot of his international players for the trip to France, but Italian star Matteo Minozzi will be on the bench for Wasps.


Leinster vs Northampton Saints (KO 13:00 UK)

Irish centre Garry Ringrose will make his return to the Leinster team against Northampton this weekend, after breaking his jaw in the 50-17 Guinness Six Nations Round 4 victory over Italy in October.

He will be just one of a number of Irish internationals on show in Dublin, with the likes of Robbie Henshaw, Hugo Keenan and James Ryan all named in Leo Cullen’s starting XV.

Chris Boyd’s side will have recent England debutant George Furbank among their ranks, as they look to get a first win of the season under their belts.

Gloucester vs Ulster (KO 15:15 UK)

Welsh teenage sensation Louis Rees-Zammit will start for the Cherry and Whites at Kingsholm on Saturday afternoon, after making his international debut earlier this year, and will no doubt light up the international stage in the 2021 Championship.

The visitors have a raft of international players to choose from for the trip to England and will be smarting from opening round defeat to Toulouse last time out.

Stuart McCloskey, Eric O’Sullivan and John Cooney are just three of the Irish stars that will be on show this weekend, as Dan McFarland’s side look to return to winning ways.

Clermont vs Munster (KO 17:30 UK)

Clermont will be looking to build on their whopping 51-38 victory over Bristol Bears last time out when they host Munster.

The Irish side are unbeaten in all competitions so far this year and are aiming to continue that run in what is sure to be one of the ties of the round.

The French duo of Damian Penaud and Camille Lopez will be sure to light up the stage for the hosts, while Munster can count on the likes of Chris Farrell, CJ Stander and Conor Murray to produce the goods.

Also on Saturday: Sale Sharks vs Edinburgh (KO 20:00 UK)

Both of these two will be looking to avenge defeats last time out, and the hosts will have former England international Marland Yarde at their disposal on the wing.

The visitors will have a number of Scottish internationals taking to the field, with the influential Blair Kinghorn and Hamish Watson keen to make their mark at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Also on Saturday: Bordeaux-Begles vs Dragons (KO 20:00 UK)

French fly-half Matthieu Jalibert will be looking to ignite Bordeaux’s clash with Dragons on Saturday evening and will have recent French debutant back-rower Cameron Woki lining up alongside him as the Welsh side come to town.

The visitors have Nick Tompkins starting at centre, with the 25-year-old featuring in every match for Wales at the 2020 Championship.


Harlequins vs Racing 92 (KO 15:15 UK)

Paul Gustard will have the experienced English international trio of Mike Brown, Danny Care and Joe Marler taking to the field at the Stoop on Sunday afternoon, as they welcome last season’s beaten finalists Racing 92 to London.

The trio have 99 Guinness Six Nations caps between them, and their experience will be invaluable as they try to secure the victory against the tough French outfit.

The visitors can call on the talents of dazzling winger Teddy Thomas as well as the flamboyant fly-half abilities of Scotland’s Finn Russell, as they look to travel home across the English Channel with the victory.

Connacht vs Bristol Bears (KO 17:30 UK)

The final piece of top-tier European action sees Bristol Bears travel to the Sportsground to face Connacht, where Irish star Bundee Aki will be in action for the hosts, while the Bears will have 2020 Championship winner Kyle Sinckler lining up at prop.