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PREVIEW: All-French affair in Challenge Cup final as Lyon face Toulon

It’s an all-French affair in the Challenge Cup final with Toulon and Lyon squaring off on Friday evening. Which one of these sides will take the second-tier European crown?

Leo Berdeu of Lyon - Challenge Cup
Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports

It’s an all-French affair in the Challenge Cup final with Toulon and Lyon squaring off on Friday evening. Which one of these sides will take the second-tier European crown?

Challenge Cup

Lyon v Toulon
Friday 27 May – 21:00
Stade Vélodrome

To Win Match
Lyon 23/10 | Draw 25/1 | Toulon 37/100

This French affair has some extra spice to it with Toulon and Lyon still in a desperate scrap to make the Top 14 play-offs and only a solitary point separating them on the ladder.

Both teams know their domestic campaigns are hanging by a thread so this game is incredibly vital when it comes to measuring whether their respective seasons will be judged as successful or not.

If they don’t make the Top 14 play-offs but take the Challenge Cup, that should be enough to appease the fans.

Both teams were involved in games of attrition in the semi-finals with Lyon squeezing past Wasps 20-18 with Leo Berdeu the star of the show as he scored 15 of his side’s 20 points. Toulon were more comfortable against Saracens with a double from Gabin Villière dragging them to a 25-16 win over the North London big guns.

These two sides have met twice this season on the domestic scene with Toulon the dominant force in both affairs as they beat Lyon 10-43 at the Stade Matmut and 19-13 at the Stade Mayol.

This should be a close-run thing but I reckon Toulon will ultimately take it. They’ve got some really big names leaving the club very soon and those international stars will want to cap their time off at the Stade Mayol in style. You also have to take into account that they’ve already beaten Lyon twice this season already. 

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