EPCR unveil Heineken Champions Cup format for 2021/22 season

Toulouse were the winners of the Heineken Champions Cup in the 2020/21 season
Toulouse were the winners of the Heineken Champions Cup in the 2020/21 season
©EPCR

The EPCR have announced the format for the 2021/22 season of Heineken Champions Cup which will have 71 games.

The tournament will see 24 teams - eight apiece from Gallagher Premiership, Pro14 and Top 14 divided into two equal groups of 12 teams each which will be decided by a draw.

The group stage will start in December and will have four rounds with the top eight teams in each pool progressing to the knock-out stage of round of 16 which will be played in April.

The quarter-finals and semi-finals will be played in the first two weekends of May with the final of European Challenge Cup and Heineken Champions Cup scheduled on 27th and 28th May respectively with Stade Vélodrome in Marseille being the venue.

The number 1 and number 2 ranked clubs from each league will be in Tier 1, the number 3 and number 4 ranked clubs will be in Tier 2, the number 5 and 6 ranked clubs will be in Tier 3, and the number 7 and number 8 ranked clubs will be Tier 4.

The Tier 1 and the Tier 4 clubs which have been drawn in the same pool, but which are not in the same league, will play one another home and away during the pool stage, as will the Tier 2 and Tier 3 clubs which have been drawn in the same pool, but which are not in the same league.

2021/22 Heineken Champions Cup qualifiers

Gallagher Premiership: 1 Harlequins, 2 Exeter Chiefs, 3 Bristol Bears, 4 Sale Sharks, 5 Northampton Saints, 6 Leicester Tigers, 7 Bath Rugby, 8 Wasps

Guinness PRO14: 1 Leinster Rugby, 2 Munster Rugby, 3 Ulster Rugby, 4 Connacht Rugby, 5 Scarlets, 6 Ospreys, 7 Cardiff Rugby, 8 Glasgow Warriors

TOP 14: 1 Stade Toulousain, 2 Stade Rochelais, 3 Racing 92, 4 Union Bordeaux-Bègles, 5 ASM Clermont Auvergne, 6 Stade Français Paris, 7 Castres Olympique, 8 Montpellier Hérault Rugby

2021/22 key dates
Round 1 – 10/11/12 December
Round 2 – 17/18/19 December
Round 3 – 14/15/16 January 2022
Round 4 – 21/22/23 January 2022
Round of 16 (1st leg) – 8/9/10 April 2022
Round of 16 (2nd leg) – 15/16/17 April 2022
Quarter-finals – 6/7/8 May 2022
Semi-finals – 13/14/15 May 2022
Challenge Cup final – Friday 27 May 2022; Stade Vélodrome, Marseille
Heineken Champions Cup final – Saturday 28 May 2022; Stade Vélodrome, Marseille

 

European Rugby Champions Cup Points Table