Montpellier v Calvisano preview: Hosts look to get ack in contention to reach the knockout stages
Montpellier welcome Italian side Calvisano to the Altrad Stadium tonight: 19:30 kick-off
Hosts are looking to bounce back after being well beaten by Harlequins last weekend
Calvisano suffered a massive defeat at the hands of Cardiff Blues in their tournament opener
Montpellier are aiming to get their European Rugby Challenge Cup campaign back on track against Italian side Calvisano at the Altrad Stadium tonight.
The hosts, who were well beaten by Harlequins last Thursday night, need the win to put themselves back in contention to reach the knockout stages.
Jake White’s side have every right to be confident having won five of their six matches against Italian opponents in the Challenge Cup, with the average margin of those successes coming to 39 points.
However, their France international Francois Trinh-Duc admits domestic duties remain a priority for his club, the fly-half is determined they put on a good show in continental competition.
“It would be wrong if, as a club, we did not give ourselves the chance to do well in this competition. European tournaments are a great test for coaches and players,” he said.
“The Top 14 is our priority but we will be playing our games in the Challenge Cup with the intention of winning. We have had a tough run of fixtures. If you look at the calendar, we played Harlequins on the back of games against Toulouse, Toulon and Clermont. It is not ideal.
“But those are things we cannot control. We have to move on and look forward to a new challenge and look to give ourselves the chance of qualification.”
Montpellier: Benjamin Fall, Marvin O’Connor, Anthony Tultavake, Robert Ebersohn, Julien Malzieu, Francois Trinh-Duc, Benoit Pallague, Mikheil Nariashvili, Mickael Ivaldi, Nicolas Mas, Paul Willemse, Thibaut Privat, Fulgence Ouedraogo, Ben Mowen, Kelian Galletier.
Replacements: Charles Geli, CJ Van Der Linde, Patric Cilliers, Robin Tchale Watchou, Akapusi Qera, Nic White, Demetri Catrakillis, Yvan Reilhac.
Calvisano: Matteo Minozzi, Benjamin de Jager, Alberto Chiesa, Tommaso Castello, Marco Susio, Filippo Buscemo, Riccardo Raffaele, Sami Panico, Lorenzo Giovanchelli, Salvatore Costanzo, Agustin Cavalieri, Davide Zanetti, Alessio Zdrillich, Maxime Mbanda, Jim Tuivaiti.
Replacement: Gabriele Morelli, Elia Violi, Rudy Biancotti, Luca Beccaris, Matteo Archetti, Renato Giammarioli, Giacomo De Santis, Daniele di Giulio
Date: Friday, November 20
Venue: Stade de la Mosson