Premiership Rugby notes the statement issued this evening concerning the proposed new European club rugby competitions for the 2014/15 season.
There is no detail concerning the teams involved or the competition format given the absence of so many teams.
The English and French clubs served notice on ERC and its competitions on 1st June 2012 and the required notice period concludes after the end of this season when the Accord will terminate.
Today's announcement would appear to indicate that the latest negotiations have been ended, as was the case in September 2013. As a result, we shall continue to implement the plans underway for the Rugby Champions Cup with the declared participants in time for the 2014-15 season, as required by our clubs and communicated in the joint statement of 10 September 2013 and subsequent media statements.
The two new competitions will be based on:
* Qualification on merit
* A strong competition format
* Equality between the leagues
* Higher commercial values for the teams
* Expansion into new markets.
The sun shone of the AJ Bell Stadium this morning as Sale Sharks hosted their annual press day ahead of the new season. The media were out in big numbers including television, radio and the written media.
Sale Sharks will be looking to attract a capacity crowd to the AJ Bell Stadium when they entertain Munster in their opening group game in the European Champions Rugby Cup on Saturday 18th October, kick off 1pm.
Sale Sharks made the journey to the Fylde coast to play their, now annual, pre season game. Fylde have enjoyed a lot of success in recent seasons and last season they finished third in Division One under the leadership of former Sharks backs coach Mark Nelson.
The fixtures, dates, venues and kick-off times for Rounds 1 and 2 of the inaugural European Rugby Champions Cup and the European Rugby Challenge Cup will be announced on Thursday at 2.00pm by organisers EPCR.