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slowdive

Are Toulouse ready for Super League?

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I'm passionate about French RL, but I only want Toulouse to get promoted if they are really ready for it.  How ready are they on and off the field?  Not a thread about whether they will be promoted!  How ready are they and what do they need to do to step up?

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7 minutes ago, slowdive said:

I'm passionate about French RL, but I only want Toulouse to get promoted if they are really ready for it.  How ready are they on and off the field?  Not a thread about whether they will be promoted!  How ready are they and what do they need to do to step up?

It’s an interesting one and it depends what barometer you’re measuring them against as the standard for SL.

If you’re comparing with them to Salford and Widnes then they’re probably about ready on the field.

Off the field, they probably need to do a bit more work, although youth development is encouraging. It’s more to do with the stadium, infrastructure and commercial side of things that they’re not ready. However they could utilise one of the city’s municipal facilities in the interim. I would be happy if they went up this season and were given time to develop and grow. That said, another season in the Championship developing and getting these things in place, wouldn’t hurt them

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The big difference is that Catalan had over 18 months knowing they were in SL to prepare, build their brand and promote SL. Whereas if TO do get promoted they have little time to create that impact straight away. Over the long term I have no qualms that they will be a success, the city is huge and their attendances have been higher than Catalans before they entered SL. 

They just need to resolve their stadium issue and get back to playing in their old ground coz the current one in Blagnac has no atmosphere whatsoever. 

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1 minute ago, The Daddy said:

The big difference is that Catalan had over 18 months knowing they were in SL to prepare, build their brand and promote SL. Whereas if TO do get promoted they have little time to create that impact straight away. Over the long term I have no qualms that they will be a success, the city is huge and their attendances have been higher than Catalans before they entered SL. 

They just need to resolve their stadium issue and get back to playing in their old ground coz the current one in Blagnac has no atmosphere whatsoever. 

Thanks to the Catalan presence in SL for all these years, any potential British signing for Toulouse (should they get promoted) will be able to find out quite easily from those who have gone before that playing for a French club isn't actually a terrifying leap into the unknown, but quite an attractive option.

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I also think the Catalans got one year in SL where they were guaranteed not to be relegated. 

I wonder about how the support will be if they do get promoted. Crowd numbers now are in the 2,000+ bracket. Will the locals embrace their promotion and turn out in much greater numbers? Do they have the financial backing to be able to sufficiently strengthen their squad? 

I noticed at a French language forum, one Catalan fan was now hoping they could have a local derby team to play. 

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1 hour ago, The Daddy said:

The big difference is that Catalan had over 18 months knowing they were in SL to prepare, build their brand and promote SL. Whereas if TO do get promoted they have little time to create that impact straight away. Over the long term I have no qualms that they will be a success, the city is huge and their attendances have been higher than Catalans before they entered SL. 

They just need to resolve their stadium issue and get back to playing in their old ground coz the current one in Blagnac has no atmosphere whatsoever. 

I wouldn’t say Blagnac lacks atmosphere, it’s very quirky in it’s own ways with the beer terrace (maybe it should be a beer garden instead? 😊) and the two stands are huge with excellent sight lines. However, it’s very much out of sight, out of mind in terms of being in an area separate to the city - one not on the subway nor immediately on the tram network - and more importantly what you would hope would be a bit of a RL heartland in the area around Minimes. If they could transport the quality of the stadium at Blagnac to the location at Minimes then they’d be on to a winner. 

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Yeah look you can't compare alot to if they where in sl.

* crowds - compare utc crowds 1000 to now 10000 alot. Toulouse tests matches have been around that 9 to 13k and the on the road dragons game drew bit crowd. They will be 8k averages if in sl.

* venue - been stated alot there like 4 stadia with capacity of 10k plus on toulouse.

* players stocks quite strong will trouble salford and widnes. 

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Could they play at the union stadium if promoted? Or have they said it's off limits? 

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15 minutes ago, londonrlfan said:

Could they play at the union stadium if promoted? Or have they said it's off limits? 

They can. 

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24 minutes ago, londonrlfan said:

Could they play at the union stadium if promoted? Or have they said it's off limits? 

Believe ernest is able to be shared with Stade toulousain 

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It’s a big question. They had a five year plan and this is year 2. Too 4 was their goal this year and they are 4-6 points shy of being solid in my view, team wise.  There are no guarantees I believe that they will make top 4 - it’s still a scramble ( unless my sums are wrong ).

i don’t believe that they are ready commercially. TV rights and bigger sponsorship like Toronto has to kick in for the overall mix of $$’s, and top grade talent in terms of management and talent, although Sylvain Houles is worthy of testing in SL coaching.

There’s talent building in the Championship.  Imagine Bradford and York come up, Leigh, Fev, London and Halifax stay, Widnes and Salford drop, and Toulouse don’t get promoted.

Then RFL change the rules to one up one down. Sick.   Toulouse would need huge dollars to get out of the Championship and sustain.

Damned if they do. Damned if they don’t.  RFL holds the cards and a vision to expand the game internationally.  Toulouse and another North American side surely have to be part of that.

Whatderyathnk ?

 

 

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7 minutes ago, Snowman123 said:

It’s a big question. They had a five year plan and this is year 2. Too 4 was their goal this year and they are 4-6 points shy of being solid in my view, team wise.  There are no guarantees I believe that they will make top 4 - it’s still a scramble ( unless my sums are wrong ).

i don’t believe that they are ready commercially. TV rights and bigger sponsorship like Toronto has to kick in for the overall mix of $$’s, and top grade talent in terms of management and talent, although Sylvain Houles is worthy of testing in SL coaching.

There’s talent building in the Championship.  Imagine Bradford and York come up, Leigh, Fev, London and Halifax stay, Widnes and Salford drop, and Toulouse don’t get promoted.

Then RFL change the rules to one up one down. Sick.   Toulouse would need huge dollars to get out of the Championship and sustain.

Damned if they do. Damned if they don’t.  RFL holds the cards and a vision to expand the game internationally.  Toulouse and another North American side surely have to be part of that.

Whatderyathnk ?

 

 

Others are much more knowledgeable than me, but I'd think they would do ok commercially. They already seem to have food business links, which should improve if in the top flight. Also, could expect support from the council/regional government?

The only question mark for me is the ground. Can they share a municipal stadium at a reasonable rate or expand? 

I agree the championship is likely to get harder, though I think your maths is off - you'd need an extra team to go up if Widnes and Salford come down. 

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Im certain that Toulouse are far more ready for Super League than Catalans were and there is certainly better depth in the number of French full time players than when Catalans were admitted.

 

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I can only wonder where we'd be now if Toulouse had got in ahead of Crusaders. I think Toulouse have the potential to be a top 4 side. They are potentially much bigger than Catalans. Bigger population, bigger commercial opportunities, strong youth development. 

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6 minutes ago, londonrlfan said:

I can only wonder where we'd be now if Toulouse had got in ahead of Crusaders. I think Toulouse have the potential to be a top 4 side. They are potentially much bigger than Catalans. Bigger population, bigger commercial opportunities, strong youth development. 

I really think we have wasted a decade of French development by not admitting a 2nd French Super League side i.e Toulouse. A more proactive sport would certainly have had Toulouse in years ago. We would now have a far stronger French national team, more French players and potentially French TV money.

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It’s an interesting question. Surely after three years in the RFL system they know what is required. When I hear good French kids going to union I think about how best to keep them in the game. Super League and more international opportunity has to happen. Cmon TO!! Now is the time.

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38 minutes ago, Damien said:

I really think we have wasted a decade of French development by not admitting a 2nd French Super League side i.e Toulouse. A more proactive sport would certainly have had Toulouse in years ago. We would now have a far stronger French national team, more French players and potentially French TV money.

Spot on. RL spends far more time wondering about what ifs while other sports move forward at a much faster rate. 

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1 hour ago, Snowman123 said:

It’s a big question. They had a five year plan and this is year 2. Too 4 was their goal this year and they are 4-6 points shy of being solid in my view, team wise.  There are no guarantees I believe that they will make top 4 - it’s still a scramble ( unless my sums are wrong ).

i don’t believe that they are ready commercially. TV rights and bigger sponsorship like Toronto has to kick in for the overall mix of $$’s, and top grade talent in terms of management and talent, although Sylvain Houles is worthy of testing in SL coaching.

There’s talent building in the Championship.  Imagine Bradford and York come up, Leigh, Fev, London and Halifax stay, Widnes and Salford drop, and Toulouse don’t get promoted.

Then RFL change the rules to one up one down. Sick.   Toulouse would need huge dollars to get out of the Championship and sustain.

Damned if they do. Damned if they don’t.  RFL holds the cards and a vision to expand the game internationally.  Toulouse and another North American side surely have to be part of that.

Whatderyathnk ?

 

 

Toulouse only need to beat Dewsbury at home to make the Top 4, it’s pretty much nailed on. If they get a result against Halifax today, they don’t even need that.

 I do agree that the Championship will get harder and with the potential additional central funding from being in SL, I think it would be in Toulouse best interests to go up this year, even if they’re not quite ready.

That said it’s really SL that holds the cards, not RFL, and Elstone is seemingly a fan of Toulouse so who knows. They may even look at a period of grace ala Catalans, if they can get something in return, such as a decent revenue earning tv deal from Bein

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5 minutes ago, DoubleD said:

Toulouse only need to beat Dewsbury at home to make the Top 4, it’s pretty much nailed on. If they get a result against Halifax today, they don’t even need that.

 I do agree that the Championship will get harder and with the potential additional central funding from being in SL, I think it would be in Toulouse best interests to go up this year, even if they’re not quite ready.

That said it’s really SL that holds the cards, not RFL, and Elstone is seemingly a fan of Toulouse so who knows. They may even look at a period of grace ala Catalans, if they can get something in return, such as a decent revenue earning tv deal from Bein

Good post. 

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1 hour ago, Damien said:

Im certain that Toulouse are far more ready for Super League than Catalans were and there is certainly better depth in the number of French full time players than when Catalans were admitted.

Indeed, one the things that gets a little re-written about Les Catalans (along with everybody being in favour of their entrance and it being a sure thing success) is that they came in to SL as a fully formed big club. They didnt, crowds werent huge, playing strength was low and the Gilbert Brutus was nowhere near sufficient.

It was their entrance in to SL that was the catalyst for them to get to this point and Toulouse are ahead of where Les Catalans were...

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28 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Indeed, one the things that gets a little re-written about Les Catalans (along with everybody being in favour of their entrance and it being a sure thing success) is that they came in to SL as a fully formed big club. They didnt, crowds werent huge, playing strength was low and the Gilbert Brutus was nowhere near sufficient.

It was their entrance in to SL that was the catalyst for them to get to this point and Toulouse are ahead of where Les Catalans were...

Catalans and Toulouse in SL would likely raise crowd strengths and marketability in France bringing a growth overall for SL.  French Givernment funding to RU is huge, and RL could put pressure to deliver more of that funds but as well as TV rights. Media is desperate for good content, and they already have Catalans in France who are well known now as a brand.  Thankfully they have played into the Super 8s to strengthen the sponsorship profile. 

Toylouse city funding could play in as well as it benefits the marketability of domestic and international Tourism.  They have a world class airport and this enhances the appeal of SW France and the Pyrenees area with co branding sponsorship.  

Are Toulouse ready?  2nd thoughts maybe.  My concern is that they may not make it into SL with tonight’s game against Halifax and corresponding Qualifier home fixtures,,  as well as overall performance. 

Many changes to SL competition structures should fast track Toulouse and Toronto for the good of the game.  You may even raise the profile in London then. Now we’re talking.

is Toulouse ready ? Maybe the question should be is SL ready to look ft the game for its overall expansion benefits. 

Edited by Snowman123
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1 hour ago, Damien said:

I really think we have wasted a decade of French development by not admitting a 2nd French Super League side i.e Toulouse. A more proactive sport would certainly have had Toulouse in years ago. We would now have a far stronger French national team, more French players and potentially French TV money.

I do agree, although Toulouse has never yet presented an offer that RL in the UK cannot refuse. They have either been playing out of dodgy facilities, been underperforming even in the French leagues, or on questionable financial footing. Or all three.

I have long been an advocate of them being in Super League - I think the city would be a wonderful addition. The current set-up is the strongest Toulouse club there has been in the Super League era, and I think that if they were given a Catalans-type entry into SL with 18 months to plan they would really grasp it. If they go up this time, they might too but I think it will be more of a struggle. The good news about canning the 8s is that going up will mean going up: there won't be an inevitability about playing the Middle 8s next year which I think takes the shine off promotion.

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Are Salford ready? Are Widnes ready? Are Huddersfield ready? Are Wakefield ready? Are Hull KR ready? 

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3 hours ago, winnyason said:

Believe ernest is able to be shared with Stade toulousain 

If they shared that stadium, is its management competent to switch the field markings back and forth depending on which team is playing?

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