French Top 14: Lyon v Toulon Preview

Lyon and Toulon will square off, in what should be a titanic battle, when they meet on Saturday the 3rd of March.  

This one could well prove to be a battle for the ages with over-performing underdogs Lyon taking on mega-rich underachievers, Toulon. Both teams are gunning for play-off berths and with time running out, neither side can afford to lose this one.

Lyon v Toulon
Saturday 3 March
Matmut Stadium Garland


To Win (80 Mins)
Lyon 5/10
Draw 17/1
Toulon 33/20

Who would have thought that Lyon would have still been up there with the chasing pack after enduring such a dire close to 2017? I didn't. I thought it was tickets after that five-game losing streak that started back in November. Since the turn of the year though, the Wolves have been in all-mighty form at home racking up big wins over Agen (71-17) and Clermont (36-10) at the Matmut Stadium Garland.

Lyon will have to be on their guard, however, as Toulon, despite the woeful away record that they've carried for most of the season, have produced some good rugby in recent weeks and head into this one off the back of a 20-27 away victory over big guns, La Rochelle.

One has to be impressed by the recent 'swing' that Toulon have managed to pull off. The Parisians find themselves in fourth on the Top 14 standings and through to the quarter-finals of the European Rugby Champions Cup. Not bad for a side that's experienced eight loses from the 18 domestic games they have played.

As I alluded to earlier, Toulon come into this one off the back of some solid domestic form. The 'Galacticos' of the Top 14 have won their last three fixtures on the trot. They smashed Stade (43-5) and Bordeaux (36-12) out in Paris before travelling to La Rochelle and pipping their much-vaunted hosts by seven points.

Verdict: Lyon 5/10
Toulon just don't seem a side capable of racing up two consecutive way wins. Yes they're talented, but they are about as consistent as press releases regarding 'Day Zero' have been. Lyon on the board is not of too much value, but I feel it's a banker.

Written by Darry Worthington for

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