Mathieu Bastareaud is a go-to man for France and Johnny Sexton should expect to see a lot of him on Saturday. Photograph: Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images

Although the margins between the sides have been wafer thin, sometimes non-existent in recent years, Philippe Saint-André has portrayed his team as un(...)

It is believed the French are considering promoting Morgan Parra at scrumhalf to start against Ireland at The Aviva Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Getty Images. 3:25

No games seem set to define Ireland’s calendar year, and perhaps even the Joe Schmidt era, more than the meetings with the French. It was in Paris las(...)

France’s Teddy Thomas takes possession during the Test against Australia at the Stade de France. Photograph: Reuters.

A natural born worrier if ever there was one, Joe Schmidt would have assiduously watched every minute of France’s compelling 29-26 win over Australia (...)

Toulouse’s head coach Guy Noves, who is now in his 21st successive season in charge of the club. During this time they have won four Heineken Cups, more than any other side. Photograph: Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty Images

It’s rare when Munster pay host to a club who actually have a better pedigree than themselves in European rugby, but when it comes to the Heineken (...)

Leo Cullen in action against Perpignan in the 2003 Heineken Cup semi-final – Brian O’Driscoll and Gordon D’Arcy are the two other survivors from that defeat

Leo Cullen went and mentioned it yesterday. Perpignan. It was the 2003 Heineken Cup semi-final in Lansdowne Road and all Leins(...)