Ahead of a busy weekend of Heineken Champions Cup action, we look at which teams are still in the mix, with an opportunity of claiming a precious quarter-final place in this season’s tournament.
A win for Leinster at Wasps on Sunday will see the holders qualify as pool winners and likely secure a home quarter-final. If they claim a bonus point win, the home quarter is guaranteed. A Toulouse victory over Bath at Ernest Wallon should be enough for a place in the last eight depending on results elsewhere, but if Leinster slip up, Toulouse could top the pool.
If Exeter manage to upset the odds at a sold-out Thomond Park on Saturday and deprive Munster of a losing bonus point, they will qualify on the basis of the head-to-head matches between the sides. A win for Munster will secure them a place in the knockout stage for the 18th time, but might not be enough to earn a home quarter-final, that will be dependent on results elsewhere.
Saracens are already through to the knockout stage for the eighth season in a row, but will hope to secure the No 1 seeding and a home quarter-final when they play second-placed Glasgow Warriors on Saturday. Glasgow are also in the hunt for qualification on 19 points, and a win will see them join Sarries in the last eight, while a losing bonus point could well be enough for a best runner-up spot.
Racing 92 are in pole position on 21 points and a win against the Scarlets at Paris La Défense Arena will guarantee the French side a home quarter-final. Ulster, with 18 points, have a more demanding task away at Leicester. The Irish side can take advantage should Racing falter, and even a defeat at Welford Road might be enough for the 1999 champions depending on the result of the Edinburgh v Montpellier game in particular.
Edinburgh’s chances of a first qualification since 2012 are in their own hands. A win against Montpellier at BT Murrayfield on tonight and they will claim a home quarter-final while a defeat will mean they’ll have to sweat it out for a best runner-up place. Meanwhile, Montpellier who are on 16 points must win or their Champions Cup season will be over for this season.