Heineken Cup Rugby Betting Odds, Tips & Preview 2021/22

A look ahead to the 2021/22 European Champions Cup Rugby

Sam Simmonds / Exeter Chiefs ©IMAGO / Pro Sports Images 04.12.2021

The new season of Heineken Cup rugby betting starts on Friday, December 10th when Premiership side Northampton Saints play host to Racing 92 at Franklin’s Gardens.

Last season’s tournament produced an all-French Final with Toulouse getting the better of La Rochelle in the showcase match.

The reigning champions are the favourites to win this season’s Heineken Cup with the shortest-priced team from the English Premiership ahead of the big kick-off, being Exeter.

In this Heineken Cup Rugby Betting Odds preview, we take a look at this year’s competition and preview some of the front-runners.

Heineken Cup Rugby Betting Odds

Toulouse 5/2
Leinster 10/3
La Rochelle 15/2
Exeter Chiefs 15/2
Racing metro 8/1
Bordeaux 16/1
Leicester Tigers 20/1
Clermont 14/1
Munster 14/1
Bristol Bear 16/1
Harlequins 20/1
40/1 bar
* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365)

Bet at Bet365

2021/22 European Rugby Champions Cup Details

The pool stage of this season’s Heineken Cup begins in mid-December 2021. The tournament underwent dramatic changes last season to its format.

It is a 24-team format that stays in place for this season’s campaign.

The participating clubs are split into two pools of twelve. Each team only faces two of the opponents from their pool, playing those two teams home and away.

The eight teams from Pool A and the top eight teams from Pool B all go through to the Round of 16 knockout stage of the competition.


Key Pool Stage Draws

  • Toulouse – Cardiff, Wasps
  • La Rochelle – Glasgow Warriors, Bath
  • Racing 92 – Northampton, Ospreys
  • Bordeaux Begles – Scarlets, Leicester Tigers
  • Leinster – Bath, Marseille
  • Munster – Wasps, Castres
  • Ulster – Clermont, Northampton Saints
  • Connacht – Stade Francais, Leicester Tigers
  • Harlequins – Castres, Cardiff
  • Exeter Chiefs – Glasgow Warriors, Montpellier
  • Leicester Tigers – Bordeaux Begles, Connacht
  • Bristol Bears – Stade Francais, Scarlets


How the seeding works

It is not the most straightforward of setups, to be fair. The European Champions is contested between teams from the French Top 14, the English Premiership and the Pro 14 United Rugby Championship (Irish, Scottish and Welsh teams).

The top two teams from each of those competitions were in Tier 1 of the Heineken Cup draw, the third and fourth-ranked clubs were in Tier 2 and so on down the line.

For the draw of matches in the Pool stage of the Heineken Cup, the Tier 1 teams face Tier 4 opponents home and away, with Tier 2 teams playing the Tier 3 teams home and away.


European Champions Cup Seedings 2021/22

  • Toulouse, La Rochelle, Harlequins, Exeter Chiefs, Leinster, Munsters – Tier 1 teams
  • Racing 92, Bordeaux Begles, Bristol Bears, Sale Sharks, Ulster, Connacht – Tier 2 teams
  • Clermont, Stade Francais, Northampton Saints, Leicester Tigers, Scarlets, Ospreys – Tier 3 teams
  • Castres, Montpellier, Bath, Wasps, Cardiff, Glasgow Warriors – Tier 4 teams:


Heineken Cup 2021/22 Pool A

La Rochelle, Exeter Chiefs, Leinster, Montpellier, Bath, Glasgow Warriors, Racing 92, Sale Sharks, Ulster, Clermont, Northampton Saints, Ospreys

Heineken Cup 2021/22 Pool B

Bristol Bears, Toulouse, Harlequins, Munsters, Castres, Wasps, Cardiff, Bordeaux Begles, Connacht, Stade Francais, Leicester Tigers, Scarlets


Champions Cup Era Title winners

  • 2015 Toulon
  • 2016 Saracens
  • 2017 Saracens
  • 2018 Leinster
  • 2019 Saracens
  • 2020 Exeter Chiefs
  • 2021 Toulouse


Toulouse reigning champions and favourites

Toulouse lifted last season’s title at Twickenham with a 22-17 win over La Rochelle. That was their fifth title in the European Champions Cup, making them the most successful club in the competition’s history.

You would expect the French club to be back in connection again this season. Toulouse are the current 5/2 favourites in Heineken Cup Rugby betting* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

This season’s Pool stage draw pits them against Cardiff and Wasps, so it’s unlikely that that French side are going to miss out on a top-eight place in the pool.

At the time of writing, Toulouse were second in the Top 14 approaching the mid-way point of the season.

Leading French Contenders

Toulouse 5/2
La Rochelle 15/2
Racing 92 8/1
Broadaxe 16/1
* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365)

Bet at Bet365

The French threat is real again

It was a big season for French clubs in the 2020/21 European Rugby Champions Cup.

Toulouse, Bordeaux and La Rochelle occupied three of the four semi-final slots. Irish side Leinster took the other.

So it was a largely dominant season by French sides and they bring a big threat to the table again in Europe’s premier rugby competition.

Bordeaux are in superb shape this season, leading the Top 14, and La Rochelle are capable of another deep run as well.

The latter are 15/2 to sweep the title this season* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

Racing 92 and Clermont were both Quarter Finalists in last season’s competition as well. Racing 92 have been to three of the last six Finals.

Four of the seven Heineken Cup matches from the quarter-finals onwards were all-French match-ups last season.

Leading English contenders

Exeter Chiefs 15/2
Bristol Bears 16/1
Leicester Tigers 20/1
Harlequins 20/1
* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365)

Bet at Bet365

Exeter lead the English Premiership challenge

With Saracens (England’s most successful club in the European Champions Cup) still serving a ban from European competition, Exeter Chiefs are the shortest-priced English team in the draw.

The Chiefs are a quote of 15/2 in rugby betting to land the title* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

They secured their first Heineken Cup title in 2020 with a victory over Racing 92.

The Premiership club will once again prioritise the competition. But it hasn’t been the strongest of seasons so far in the Premiership by Rob Baxter’s men.

Will the Chiefs be able to step it up? Last season’s Exeter fell in the quarter-finals to Leinster.

In this season’s pool stage, Exeter face Glasgow and Montpellier.

The outstanding team of the 2021/22 Premiership season has been Leicester Tigers.

The two-time European Rugby Champions Cup winners were runners-up Heineken Challenge Cup last season, missing out to Montpellier by a single point.

The Tigers are in an interesting 20/1 pre-tournament option for rugby betting* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

Last season’s Premiership title winners Harlequins can currently be taken at the same quote as Leicester to pick up the title.

This is a piece of silverware that Quins have never won.

Leading United rugby Championship contenders

Leistner 10/3
Munster 14/1
Ulster 40/1
Connacht 200/1
* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

Bet at Bet365

Leinster lead the Irish charge

Leinster are a team that can never be written off and they knocked on the door in the previous campaign.

After receiving a bye in the Round of 16, they came up with the goods on a trip to Sandy Park in the Quarter Finals, beating Exeter 34-22.

Leinster then found La Rochelle too-hot to handle France in the semi-finals, but the Pro14 club cannot be written off.

They have come out of the gates firing on all cylinders once again in the United Rugby Championship.

They are the current leaders with a W6 L1 record at the time of writing, taking a try bonus in five of those seven.

Leinster have received a favourable draw in the Pool stage as they have to face Premiership strugglers Bath and Marseille.

Leinster pose a threat from 10/3 in the Heineken Cup Rugby betting outright* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

Our betting prediction:
Racing 92 Outright

Bet at Bet365

(odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365)


European Rugby Champions Cup Betting Predictions

This should be another fantastic season although the pool stage remains in its very strange format.

But is the French contingent that really look to be the strongest of the bunch once again this season.

It wouldn’t be any surprise to see a French side pick up the title again. This season’s Final is being hosted in Marseille, so there’s extra incentive to win the title on French soil.

The Top14 teams are big threats through and through.

Toulouse have to be right there again, as there appear to be very few chinks in their armour.

But Racing 92 look a fine selection to play for at 8/1* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

They have a good recent record in the tournament and if they are boosted by home draws in the knockout, they will be tough to knock over.

Tigers the lively outsiders?

English Premiership sides fell a long way short of quality last season, Exeter being the best of the bunch.

With the experience and quality they have, they will be expecting nothing less than a quarter final berth.

The rest of the English Premiership contingent look a long way short. Bristol have a squad built for Europe, but don’t thoroughly make for a convincing option.

Leicester Tigers may be capable of putting a big run together if they can kick on from last season’s appearance in the final of the Challenge Cup.

The Tigers may just be the better selection at 20/1 each-way as a longer play* (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

But the genuine strong pick behind the leading French contenders, has to be, without much question, Leinster at 10/3 outright * (odds record at 21:32 GMT on December 8th, 2021 at Bet365).

They look one of the best sides to handle those long, gruelling defensive matches out on the road.