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Four-time European Cup winners Toulouse will be looking to use their greater experience of the big occasion to end Bordeaux-Bègles’ five-match Heineken Champions Cup winning run in their first semi-final on Saturday.
The game at Stade Ernest Wallon – the clubs’ first meeting in European competition – will be Toulouse’s 13th appearance in the last four of Europe’s prestigious club competition.
The tie will be televised live on BT Sport, beIN SPORTS, FR2, Virgin Media and C4 from 15:00 UK and Irish time.
Toulouse: 3rd in Heineken Champions Cup Pool B; 10 points
Bordeaux-Bègles: 3rd in Heineken Champions Cup Pool A; 9 points
ASM Clermont Auvergne 12-21 Toulouse
Bordeaux-Bègles 24-21 Racing 92
Heineken Champions Cup head-to-head record
The sides have never met in European competition
Leading 2020/21 points-scorers
Toulouse: Romain Ntamack (41)
Bordeaux-Bègles: Matthieu Jalibert (63)
Who are you backing for the W? 🤔
— Heineken Champions Cup (@ChampionsCup) April 27, 2021
Ugo Mola (Toulouse): “We’ve learnt from the two semi-finals we lost the last two seasons. I hope that this match against UBB will allow us to turn the corner. To play in a European Cup final is really something. We know the effort we need to supply to get there.”
Christophe Urios (Bordeaux-Bègles): “We are obviously very happy to be in the semi-finals of this competition and it’s a huge meeting, but we won’t be putting on any pressure. We go there to surprise them and try to compete against the best in France and in Europe.”
- This will be the first time that Toulouse and Bordeaux-Bègles have met in European competition.
- Toulouse have won six of their last seven clashes with Bordeaux-Bègles in the TOP 14 (L1) and have never lost a home game against them in the competition (W9, D1).
- Bordeaux-Bègles have won their last five games in the Heineken Champions Cup, their best run in the competition and as many victories as they’d managed in their 12 games prior to this streak (L7).
- Toulouse have reached the semi-final stage of the Heineken Champions Cup for the 13th time, with only Munster having progressed this far more often (14). Bordeaux are here for the first time.
- Toulouse have a 100% scrum success rate in the Heineken Champions Cup this season, one of five sides to manage this. They’ve won the most scrums (18) of any of those five teams.
- Bordeaux have been shown five yellow cards in the Heineken Champions Cup this season, more than any other side. Their average of 15.5 penalties conceded per game is the most of any side to play more than twice in the competition this season.
- Antoine Dupont (Toulouse) is the only scrum-half to score multiple (3) tries in the Heineken Champions Cup this season. He has also made the most carries (24) and metres (147) of any scrum-half and beaten more than twice as many defenders (15) as anyone else in his position.
- Guido Petti Pagadizaval has stolen a tournament-high four opposition lineouts in the Heineken Champions Cup this season. Bordeaux teammate Cameron Woki is one of four players to have stolen three throws.
- Santiago Cordero (Bordeaux) is one of three players to score a competition-high four tries in the Heineken Champions Cup this season. He has also beaten a team joint-high tally of 11 defenders so far in this campaign.
- Matthieu Jalibert (Bordeaux) is the top points-scorer (63) in the Heineken Champions Cup this season. He has also made the most offloads (10) of any player and ranks third for most carries (41).
Match Centre - Preview - Lineups
Toulouse will go in search of a record-breaking fifth European title later this month after they defeated Bordeaux-Begles 21-9 in their Heineken Champions Cup semi-final clash on Saturday afternoon at Stade Ernest-Wallon.
The four-time European champions scored tries either side of half-time courtesy of Matthis Lebel and Antoine Dupont as the visitors struggled to create attacking opportunities throughout.
They did however take the early lead, as Matthieu Jalibert pointed to the posts after an early Toulouse infringement and made no mistake in the greasy conditions.
That lead lasted just three minutes though as Toulouse crossed the whitewash for the first time.
The iconic Twickenham Stadium will host the 2021 #HeinekenChampionsCup final with a limited number of fans permitted to attend 🤩
Details ➡️ https://t.co/naHHmlJQUA
Take a look back the glorious winning moments from the previous finals held at Twickenham 👇 pic.twitter.com/GrJB8zDuh1
— Heineken Champions Cup (@ChampionsCup) April 30, 2021
It came through Romain Ntamack who launched a ball wide to Maxime Medard. He flicked the ball across to Lebel and he beat one and then two tackles before diving over in the corner.
Bordeaux were clinical when they did get into position though and regained the lead with Jalibert nudging the visitors ahead from close range when Toulouse strayed offside.
Toulouse got back in front just before the break as the pressure finally paid off for the hosts and Ntamack slotted over a three-pointer, although they had a chance to extend the lead but Cheslin Kolbe’s testing kick was caught by the visitors.
— Stade Toulousain (@StadeToulousain) May 1, 2021
Two Ntamack penalties put the hosts eight points ahead but that gap was soon shortened when Jalibert responded with a three-pointer of his own.
As Bordeaux moved back into contention, Toulouse firmly shut the door on their opponents and secured a final berth.
They finally got the offload game going through Medard, and one offload later the diminuitive scrum-half Dupont managed to grab possession and sprint clear for the match-winning try, converted by Ntamack.
Toulouse will find out their Heineken Champions Cup opponents tomorrow afternoon when La Rochelle take on Leinster Rugby.