La Rochelle vs Leicester Tigers Prediction: Tigers can push reigning champs

 | January 13 | 

3 mins read

Rugby Union Generic

Sunday offers up three intriguing clashes in the European Champions Cup, including Leicester Tigers making the trip to title holders La Rochelle.

The reigning champions have endured a tough start to their title defence, suffering defeats in their opening two games.

While Leicester have made a perfect start after the opening two weekends, they might well see their copybook blotted on Sunday, against a La Rochelle side who know they need to make their move quickly or see their hopes of qualifying for the knockout stages brought to an early end.

La Rochelle vs Leicester Tigers Tips

  • Handicap 3-Way - Leicester Tigers +16 @ 10/11

Match Odds

Two-time champions La Rochelle are the 1/11 favourites to claim their first win of their Champions Cup campaign this season.

Leicester are 13/2 to land a famous win on the road at Stade Marcel Deflandre, while a tie on Sunday is available at 25/1.

Team News

Starting with the hosts, La Rochelle welcome back Pierre Bourgarit at hooker, as he partners Reda Wardi and Uini Atonio in the front-row.

It’s a frighteningly strong back five for the hosts, with Ultan Dillane, Will Skelton, Paul Doudehent, skipper Greg Alldritt and Levani Botia looking to bring the physical challenge.

In the backs, Tawer Kerr-Barlow and Antoine Hastoy make up the half-backs, with UJ Seuteni and Jonathan Danty in the centres.

The back three consists of Teddy Thomas and Dillyn Leyds on the wings, with Brice Dulin in the No.15 jersey.

As for Leicester, head coach Dan McKellar welcomes back international talent in the form of England’s Anthony Watson on the wing and Scotland’s Matt Scott, who has recovered from injury to make the bench.

Watson is joined by Mike Brown and Josh Bassett in the back three, while Solomane Kata and Dan Kelly start in the centres.

World Cup winner Hendre Pollard is on the bench, so fly-half Jamie Shillcock will start outside the experienced Ben Youngs in the half-backs.

In the forwards, James Cronin, Julian Montoya and Dan Cole will be looking to front-up, while the back five in the pack is made up of George Martin, Ollie Chessum, Matt Rogerson, Olly Cracknell and Kyle Hatherell.

Handicap 3-Way - Leicester Tigers +16 @ 10/11

Looking at the two packs, it’s hard to not see La Rochelle dominating at the set-piece and the breakdown in this one.

The old saying suggests “forwards win matches and backs decide by how many”. With that in mind, La Rochelle should come out on top in this one on home soil.

However, Leicester have attacking talent in their backline and can always look to star fly-half Pollard off the bench if things are not going according to plan.

The value in this match looks to be in the handicap market, with the Tigers afforded a +16-point head start.

While Leicester might well head back across the Channel disappointed with the result, they can fall on the right side of this generous handicap.

Find more Rugby Union Betting Tips here at Betfred Insights

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