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Best of luck against best of French

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It's a new tournament this year, but there is nothing new about the feeling of anticipation ahead of a big European game at Welford Road.

We all want our home games to kick off at 3pm on a Saturday, but there is something about hosting European games after dark, especially against star-studded French opposition. It all adds to the atmosphere, and the Tigers crowd usually rises to the occasion.
Moving the game to a Sunday late afternoon makes the expectation and anticipation even higher. From 5pm on Friday, this game is all The Tig is thinking about.
Just look at the amount of talent on both sides.
Toulon have named a starting team of internationals gathered from around the world. As Cockers said earlier this week, they really are the Barcelona or Real Madrid of rugby. There is a frightening depth to their talent wherever you look.
Habana, Wulf, Armitage and Armitage, Botha, Tillous-Borde, Masoe, Mermoz, Bastareaud, Hayman and, of course, Castrogiovanni. That would make a formidable Barbarians invitational squad, and that's before you add the organisation, analysis, teamwork and leadership gained from being together all year.
And let’s not forget that Toulon will be looking at a teamsheet including the likes of Cole, Ayerza, Youngs and Youngs, Thorn, Salvi, Allen and Goneva, plus the bright young things Kitchener, Williams and Scully.
We’ve had many classic confrontations before, with Tigers supporters able to recount tales of triumphs against the likes of Toulouse, Perpignan, Stade Francais, Pau and Clermont in the not-too-distant past.
What they all had in common was an incredible atmosphere, worthy of the players slugging it out in front of us. It’s what European occasions are all about.