The Pink city

Got something to discuss about RL in general? Then this is the place to post it.
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The Pink city

Post by jobo »

Congratulations to Toulouse. Feel sorry a bit for Featherstone, great ground and fans but two trips to France next year is a cracking prospect 😃
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Re: The Pink city

Post by fozzieskem »

Yes well done to Toulouse going to find it tough going I suspect though
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Re: The Pink city

Post by widdenoldboy »

Very good game but how old is Harrison Hansen?
Green Machine
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Re: The Pink city

Post by Green Machine »

Harrison Hansen has just turned 36.
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Re: The Pink city

Post by widdenoldboy »

Green Machine wrote: Sun Oct 10, 2021 9:29 pm Harrison Hansen has just turned 36.
Cheers - he looked pretty handy still.
Green Machine
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Re: The Pink city

Post by Green Machine »

Sorry he’s 36 end of this month :oops: yes he still looks good.
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Re: The Pink city

Post by DaveO »

Green Machine wrote:Harrison Hansen has just turned 36.
Surprised we haven’t re-signed him!
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Re: The Pink city

Post by nathan_rugby »

Hansen was a very under rated player IMO.

Absolute tackle machine and ran solid.

Career started going downhill when he bulked up and went to prop. Started collecting a few injuries too didn’t he?
Bomhead - "Lockers to prop."
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Re: The Pink city

Post by DaveO »

I always liked Hansen and was surprised Wigan let him go. He was about a season short of a testimonial if I recall correctly.

As to Toulouse articles are appearing saying SL club chairmen don’t like the idea of them being promoted as they can’t afford the cost of another trip (or with loop fixtures potential more trips ) to France as it cost £30k a time. They also expect them to bring one man and his dog as support to their U.K. fixtures so the U.K. clubs expect to lose revenue with next to no away support turning up.

Only Hethrington at Leeds is positive saying they can sell corporate trips to France and also do similar for fixtures Leeds.

Well maybe Leeds can though I am not convinced if Toulouse keep getting thrashed. Maybe Wigan can as well but can clubs like Salford, Cas and Huddersfield?

Hethrington thinks it’s all going to help the game in France but if the other SL chairmen are right it’s going to have a negative effect on the game in the U.K. when it’s strapped for cash with less Sky TV money and government loans to pay back.
josie andrews
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Re: The Pink city

Post by josie andrews »

Financially it makes no sense" - Rival Super League clubs reveal concern about impact of Toulouse promotion

A number of clubs are worried about the financial implications of a second French club in Super League.

Toulouse Olympique’s promotion has been hailed as a historic day for rugby league - but that sentiment has not been well-received by many Super League clubs.

Sylvain Houles’ side clinched their place in the top flight with victory over Featherstone Rovers in Sunday’s Championship Grand Final in France.

It means that Super League will have two French clubs for the first time next year with Toulouse to join Super League Grand Finalists Catalans Dragons in the competition next year.

However, Rugby League Live spoke to a number of English-based Super League clubs vehemently opposed to having two French teams in the competition.

They voiced concerns over two teams with a minimal away support and the impact it will have on their finances, plus the added burden of having to fly to France twice in a season.

The approximate cost of flying a team to France to play is around £30,000 and, with loop fixtures, some clubs face travelling across the Channel to play three times in 2022.

One club boss also claimed that Catalans reaching the Grand Final came at a cost of around £2million in lost revenue, with the crowd of 45,177 the lowest attendance for a title decider at Old Trafford since 1998.

Another top-flight supremo who did not wish to be named said: “If you had a secret ballot among Super League clubs about whether they want a French team in, it would be 100 per cent no.

But you say it publicly and you get lambasted by people who don’t know the details.

“If you’re a club which is struggling financially, these guys make you struggle even more.

“If a team like Bradford were in, it’s not just the revenue they bring through their away support, it’s also the fact that you’d probably have 20,000 people living in Bradford who subscribe to Sky Sports in a city with a population of 500,000.

“Financially, having two French teams in Super League makes no sense.”

While club bosses were reluctant comment at such a sensitive time for the game as Super League looks to reunite with the Rugby Football League, the feeling towards Toulouse was clear.

Recently, Super League Europe and the RFL jointly established a Strategic Working Group to consider the opportunities for the sport and to identify a strategic partner to support delivery of these opportunities.

Another club boss added: “It’s a very sensitive time in the game right now with us moving back together with the Rugby Football League and trying to find a strategic partner.

“While Featherstone going up might not have been the best look for the game – a village team being promoted to the top flight of an elite sport – at least they would have brought an away following to Super League grounds.

“Catalans don’t and neither will Toulouse, so we will feel the hit financially next year.

“Super League is not a big enough competition to sustain two clubs with no away support.

“But it will be interesting to see how it unfolds and perhaps having two French clubs will see a TV deal with a French broadcaster finally happen.

“Toulouse could potentially be a much bigger and more successful proposition than Catalans because of the size of the city and the wealth there.”

However, those sentiments were strongly dismissed by Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington, who saluted the arrival of a new French club and believes Toulouse’s promotion will allow rugby league to thrive across the Channel.

He told Rugby League Live: “I think it could be a game-changer for the sport in France.

“Rugby league was very powerful in France 50 or 60 years ago but has struggled ever since.

“Obviously Catalans’ success in Super League has reignited an interest in the game and Toulouse joining the competition can take it to a new level.

“They were historically a powerful club and rugby league has been played in Toulouse for a long time.

“They have had legendary players and it’s the fourth-biggest city in France, so I think the progress that Toulouse Olympique has made has been quite remarkable.

“Credit to the people involved for their ambition and performance in reaching Super League.

“We are SLE – Super League Europe – and to have a Super League fixture in France every week gives the game a huge opportunity there. Not only for the two clubs involved, Catalans and Toulouse, but also the rugby league authorities in France.

“It can only help the national team there, especially with the 2025 World Cup set to be staged there.”

Hetherington also dismissed fears that Toulouse’s promotion would hit Super League clubs in the pocket.

He added: “We certainly will not be taking a hit financially because we will take an unprecedented number of Leeds fans when we play there on corporate trips. Therefore we will benefit greatly from that and I also think Toulouse will bring quite a few fans when we entertain them at Headingley.

“I believe there will be quite a bit of corporate interest in that, so we certainly don’t envisage taking a financial hit from Toulouse being in Super League.

“We actually believe there will be some real financial benefits from that.”

Warrington Wolves CEO Karl Fitzpatrick said his club was interested to see what impact Toulouse would have on the competition.

"Toulouse have earned the right to Super League so we welcome them in and look forward to competing against a club that has never participated in Super League before.

"We're interested to see the commercial value two French teams may bring to the competition, be that a French broadcaster, commercial partners and support base. As a game we need to explore these opportunities. Toulouse is a big market city with a population of over 1mil and will bring colour and culture to Super League.

"Only time will tell if two French teams will add commercial value but there is no question they have earned the right to compete in the top tier."

The news has been most welcome for Toulouse's soon-to-be French counterparts, Super League Grand Finalists Catalans Dragons.

The Dragons reached their maiden Grand Final this season, losing to St Helens at the weekend, and Catalans football manager Alex Chan believes Toulouse’s rise will ensure significant growth for rugby league across the Channel.

“Toulouse reaching Super League is fantastic for French rugby league because it gives more pathways for the juniors coming through," Chan said.

“In a rugby union stronghold like Toulouse, the success of Toulouse Olympique will prove that there are more opportunities to play the 13-a-side code at the highest level.

“Having two Super League clubs in France will also improve the French national team and, above all, it proves that the game can be played outside of its heartlands in northern England.

“That has been proven in Australia to great success for many years and now two French teams have found themselves in the two big finals.

“Can you imagine having a French Super League derby in the Nou Camp at Barcelona?

We had a record Super League crowd of over 30,000 when we played Wigan there in May 2019.

“We could maybe play Toulouse at the Velodrome on Marseille or even in Paris or Montpellier. There are so many possibilities for us now.”

Catalans now have a Super League ally in Toulouse and Chan added: “We have a really close relationship with them.

“Like all local rivals, there has always been that underlying conflict.

“But in recent times we have really patched that up and worked hard to ensure we keep our young French players in France.

By working together, we’re both going to benefit and we’ve had pre-season friendlies against them.

“We attract a big following and there will be more interest now we have a genuine Super League derby rival.

“You have St Helens-Wigan and the Hull derby but now we have Toulouse-Catalans too. It will be fantastic.” ... dium=email
Anyone can support a team when it is winning, that takes no courage.
But to stand behind a team, to defend a team when it is down and really needs you,
that takes a lot of courage.
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