ERC set October date for meeting on future of European competitions

Stakeholders from unions and leagues to meet in Dublin on new accord

The Heineken Cup trophy. Photograph: Getty Images

The Heineken Cup trophy. Photograph: Getty Images


ERC has issued invitations to all signatories to the current European club rugby accord to attend a meeting in Dublin on Wednesday October 23rd in a bid to continue negotiations on an agreement for the 2014-15 season onwards.

All six rugby unions involved have been invited, along with key decision-makers from Premiership Rugby in England, France’s Ligue Nationale de Rugby and Regional Rugby Wales.

ERC also confirmed that they are in the process of compiling a shortlist of mediators to assist in the negotiations.

The English and French clubs have drawn up plans for a new competition due to their grievances over the sharing of competition revenues from European competitions, as well as qualifying criteria and format.

ERC chief executive, Derek McGrath, said: “The involvement of all parties in ERC’s make-up is as vital now as it was in the early days of the organisation. The only forum which can provide the platform for all-party negotiation under the Accord is the ERC forum and any attempt to ambush or denigrate the discussions is clearly not in the best interest of these great European tournaments.

“More than one year has passed since notice was served on the Accord and no proposal to date has received sufficient support to provide the basis for progress. This should not be seen as insurmountable, as agreement on European tournaments has always required compromise with an acceptance that no party will secure everything on their wish-list.

“The only way we ever made progress in previous Accord negotiations was by serious engagement on the part of all ERC decision-makers. The same positive approach is required now and it is hoped that all signatories to the Accord will dedicate their energy to the renewed process.”