English clubs call for ‘immediate action’ on new European competition
Premiership sides unhappy at ERC’s October date for new discussions
The Heineken Cup trophy. Photograph: Getty Images
England’s Premiership clubs have reaffirmed that they want “immediate action” to put in place a new European competition for next season.
Their stance follows a meeting on Wednesday of Premiership Rugby shareholders.
English and French clubs are seeking structural, qualification and financial changes to the Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup competitions after an existing tournament agreement expires next summer.
Exasperated at what they view as a lack of progress by European Rugby Cup over establishing a new accord – the next meeting is not scheduled until October 23rd – Premiership Rugby and France’s Ligue Nationale de Rugby say they they will establish their own format next term and that teams from other nations were welcome to join.
“On September 10 2013, Premiership Rugby issued a statement confirming that the English and French clubs were instigating new competitions after the conclusion of unsuccessful ERC negotiations,” Premiership Rugby said in a statement.
“The clubs see no purpose in new discussions starting as late as the end of October 2013, as proposed earlier this week.
“The proposals from the French and English clubs for two new, strong competitions of 20 teams in each were tabled more than a year ago.
“The clubs reaffirmed their instruction to Premiership Rugby to take immediate action to put in place a competition for the 2014/15 season onwards to include the French and English clubs, and for this competition to be open to teams from other countries.
“It was confirmed that this should be progressed with urgency.”