In advance of preparations by Europe’s leading teams for the knockout stages of the Heineken Champions Cup, EPCR have announced the four venues which are in line to host the semi-final matches on the weekend of April 20-21.
Coventry’s Ricoh Arena, Paris La Défense Arena, the Aviva Stadium in Dublin and BT Murrayfield have been selected as the venues for the games, with the 32,000-capacity Paris La Défense Arena and the iconic BT Murrayfield chosen following a recent EPCR Board decision to allow a semi-final to be played at the home stadium of a qualified team.
If number one-ranked Saracens manage to win their quarter-final match against Glasgow Warriors, they will meet either Edinburgh or Munster Rugby at the Ricoh Arena in semi-final 1.
If Edinburgh and Glasgow Warriors win their respective quarter-finals, then the two will play at BT Murrayfield, however, if Munster defeat Edinburgh, and if Glasgow get the better of Saracens, Munster and Glasgow will clash at the home of Irish Rugby, the Aviva Stadium.
With regards to semi-final 2, if Racing 92 emerge victorious from their all-French quarter-final with Toulouse, they will play either Leinster or Ulster at Paris La Défense Arena.
But if Toulouse defeat number two-ranked Racing then they will travel to Ireland to meet the winners of the Leinster v Ulster quarter-final at the Aviva Stadium.
– The format for the Heineken Champions Cup semi-finals recognises performances by teams during the pool stages with the highest-ranked sides earning home country advantage in their respective semi-final matches
– The Heineken Champions Cup semi-finals are played at venues designated by EPCR which have been selected in this instance in conjunction with the Irish Rugby Football Union, the Ligue Nationale de Rugby, Premiership Rugby and Scottish Rugby
HEINEKEN CHAMPIONS CUP SEMI-FINALS: April 20-21
Semi-final 1: if Saracens v Edinburgh, Ricoh Arena (Coventry)
Semi-final 1: if Saracens v Munster, Ricoh Arena (Coventry)
Semi-final 1: if Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors, BT Murrayfield (Edinburgh)
Semi-final 1: if Munster v Glasgow Warriors, Aviva Stadium (Dublin)
Semi-final 2: if Racing 92 v Leinster, Paris La Défense Arena
Semi-final 2: if Racing 92 v Ulster, Paris La Défense Arena
Semi-final 2: if Leinster v Toulouse, Aviva Stadium (Dublin)
Semi-final 2: if Ulster v Toulouse, Aviva Stadium (Dublin)
HEINEKEN CHAMPIONS CUP FINAL: St. James’ Park, Newcastle, Saturday, May 11, kick-off 5pm