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Toulouse Olympique Update

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Team One, Elite training, youth teams and economic aspect, Bernard Sarrazain, Chairman of Toulouse Olympique brings us up to date.

Chairman, why speak today?

BS: Today we're at a pivotal moment of the year with the start of the return phase of the Championship and the final stages that are looming,as well as the end of the French competitions. The news is dense and I feel that I had to talk about it. Our goal is the rise of the pennant team in the Super League at the end of the year; the whole club is now launched in a dynamic process to prepare this accession, thefuture, so everything must be ready today. We are already in Super League configuration. Our ambition is to be one of the major clubs of Toulouse and of the Region, just like what are the Catalans Dragons today in Perpignan.

 

What about the accession to the Super League of the professional team?

BS: The group is working very well for the moment,as attested by their second place in the standings, under the diection of Sylvain Houles and his staff. The team is constantly growing season on season, and we want to help them continue in this direction next year. That is why, from 2020, we are in the process of finalising an agreement to play all our home games ar Ernest Wallon stadium. I take this opportunity to thank the Chairman of Stade Toulousain, Didier Lacroix, for having proposed to welcome us in its enclosure. We would like the use of these infrastructures to raise our level, to reach a level of excellence never achieved before. I speak for this team, but also for all the other TO XIII formations.

 

What is the plan for the other club formations ?

BS : The TO association is doing a great job with our 400 licences, but also with many schools in the Minimes area. To continue to raise the level of our Elite 1 side, Juniors and Seniors. We’ve decided to abandon the Struxiano site to return to their old home Arnaune-Stade Minimes with these teams from next year. The U19s who have just won the French Cup will assist our Elite 1 side to raise it’s game and in the next 3-4 years win a title.

 

A solid economic base will be necessary to advance

BS : Indeed. We can always count on the Oval Table, with Carlos Zalduendo at the head, always active and productive. We intend further to launch a Business Club with the support our back office too.

 

(Getting on board with biggest rugby club in Europe in Stade Toulousain could be a game changer. Below the two respective Chairmen (left Didier Lacroix and Bernard Sarrazain) envisage a bright future. Fingers crossed)

 

 

 

 

Didier-LACROIX-Président-du-Stade-Toulousain-et-Bernard-SARRAZAIN-©-TO-XIII.jpg

Edited by audois
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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This may be wishful thinking on my part but with all the preparation TO are making for SL I wonder if they know something we don't? Toronto look dead certs for promotion so is it possible that SL will be expanding to 14 next year?

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43 minutes ago, damp squib said:

This may be wishful thinking on my part but with all the preparation TO are making for SL I wonder if they know something we don't? Toronto look dead certs for promotion so is it possible that SL will be expanding to 14 next year?

Nothing is certain until the Final is played. Toulouse has played us hard most times we have played them, and they whipped our butts in the second half in Toulouse earlier this year. Take nothing for granted.

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Positive for two reasons...

First, as suggested above, do TO know something we don't?  Is SL going to 14 next year? I hope so. 

Second, I am no fan of the other code, and generally distrust their motives, but ST appear genuine in this. More so than Quins / Broncos. It could work.

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4 hours ago, damp squib said:

This may be wishful thinking on my part but with all the preparation TO are making for SL I wonder if they know something we don't? Toronto look dead certs for promotion so is it possible that SL will be expanding to 14 next year?

I'm thinking (and hoping) so. However, if that was the plan, should they announce it now or wait until the end of the season? 

If they said now the two top sides from the Championship are being promoted, it doesn't mean TO and TWP would be those teams. If SL want to target those sides as suitable and one qualifies in the existing criteria, then the other could be invited regardless if they come second or not. On that basis, not going public at this time would certainly have merit.

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My blog: https://rugbyl.blogspot.co.nz/

It takes wisdom to know when a discussion has run its course.

It takes reasonableness to end that discussion. 

 

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23 minutes ago, RayCee said:

I'm thinking (and hoping) so. However, if that was the plan, should they announce it now or wait until the end of the season? 

If they said now the two top sides from the Championship are being promoted, it doesn't mean TO and TWP would be those teams. If SL want to target those sides as suitable and one qualifies in the existing criteria, then the other could be invited regardless if they come second or not. On that basis, not going public at this time would certainly have merit.

Or you could wait to see if they both make the final then declare it....but some might falsely thin k the fix was in then.

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13 hours ago, damp squib said:

This may be wishful thinking on my part but with all the preparation TO are making for SL I wonder if they know something we don't? Toronto look dead certs for promotion so is it possible that SL will be expanding to 14 next year?

No not at all. where do you get that idea from?? 

We are so far into this season that the twelve clubs are already organising player rosters for next year, the idea that somehow late in the season there will be a sudden decision to go to 14 is the sort of wishful thinking that has plagued this forum for so long. What you assume is that promotion to Superleague is "Automatic" when it isn't. As long ago as 1999/2000 both Hunslet and Dewsbury won the Championship but were turned down for promotion and they are member clubs. No clubs outside SL have an automatic right to enter Superleague especially "guest" clubs, Superleague can say "no" and not only that they can say two teams have to go down which happened when Widnes went down with Leigh in 2005 to accommodate Catalans.

If you want to "know something" why wishful think when you can read McManus's proclomation that "SL needs the French" He was "keen to see a second french team in superleague" as a "huge supporter" of the game there. He stated that on their own Les Catalans were an "oddity" but the addition of Toulouse would be a "huge filip" and moreso there would be "a huge difference"between a second club in France and a club entering from North America".

He didn't at all say both clubs would be a huge filip to Superleague, he said "In France there is a meaning and infrastructure, there is a semi pro league, they produce French players, France has a sad history of RL so it is important that we are supportive". His message was loud and clear that Superleague wanted Toulouse into superleague and he said why "It would open up new avenues with French Broadcasters".

Before that definitive message from Superleague (interview by Denise Brady, published in League Weekly) roundly ignored on here there were assurances from Superleague that whatever happened SL would not be a closed shop and there would be promotion. Straight away that was taken as a signal Toronto were in. Well listen to McManus again "Toronto is a team of english and antipodeans owned by an Australian in Canada" That is hardly a ringing endorsement for TWP entering Superleague is it, but that won't stop wishful thinking becoming "fact" even though the "fact" was entry to Superleague was always about overseas clubs "developing players and bringing a TV contract to share here"

Even Eric Perez accepted this, he was going to give us grid iron players, he was going to give us a big TV deal as long as half of SL accepted relegation to make way for TWP AND Ottawa, New York, Vancouver, Los Angles and Honolulu. Americans need American clubs to watch if there is to be a TV deal there. Can you not see how breathtakingly absurd this was. Can you not read McManus' lips that RL is overwhelmed by Union in Canada, that TWP haven't even started producing a single player and McManus also adds "The climate is a massive problem for the first quarter of the season" and no matter what anyone says Superleague say "you can't change the rules of the competition to suit one club"

How big a "YES" to Toulouse and how big a "NO" to Toronto do you want from Superleague bosses before you get it??

And so if you want speculation rather than reality maybe when the season ends and TWP get the hard word TO are going up instead, that will allow TO to cherry pick some of the TWP players to strengthen their squad given how late in the day their acceptance would have come. Maybe if Leeds come bottom TO will have to wait - nothing is guaranteed.

Except that Supereague are in no way keen on Toronto Wolfpack, these businessmen can see like me it's just Argylle's vanity project and if he still wants in London Skolars is the clear route for him with an investment already made.....But let's ignore any signals that the Transatlantic dream is as dead as a dodo.........

Edited by The Parksider
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Interesting that they're going back to Stade Minimes- Arnaune next year. Their Elite1side Juniors/Seniors to play there. Part of the structure there was demolished last year including one main stand and the club house. The other main stand I think is still there. Not sure if the present Championship side would train there as well. TO were left high and dry by the City Council after promising a €7m re-fit there was abandoned. I think this is where this €4m figure came up in the La Depeche newspaper report recently .The Council felt they needed a back-up plan. The idea of a new hybrid pitch at Stade Ernest Wallon would facilitate usage I presume all-year round.

Stade Toulousain intend to change the configuration at the ground with aspirations to lift the capacity from 19,500 to 40,000 removing seating and having terracing. I don't know whether this is linked to their wish to host games there for the forthcoming union WC in 2023. If the capacity was realised it would be the largest in the city. The Municipal Stadium across town is the home of TFC who play in Ligue 1and has a capacity of around 33,000. Maybe the Council are part funding that capacity up-grade too.

Edited by audois
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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, audois said:

Interesting that they're going back to Stade Minimes- Arnaune next year. Their Elite1side Juniors/Seniors to play there. Part of the structure there was demolished last year including one main stand and the club house. The other main stand I think is still there. Not sure if the present Championship side would train there as well. TO were left high and dry by the City Council after promising a €7m re-fit there was abandoned. I think this is where this €4m figure came up in the La Depeche newspaper report recently .The Council felt they needed a back-up plan. The idea of a new hybrid pitch at Stade Ernest Wallon would facilitate usage I presume all-year round.

Stade Toulousain intend to change the configuration at the ground with aspirations to lift the capacity from 19,500 to 40,000 removing seating and having terracing. I don't know whether this is linked to their wish to host games there for the forthcoming union WC in 2023. If the capacity was realised it would be the largest in the city. The Municipal Stadium across town is the home of TFC who play in Ligue 1and has a capacity of around 33,000. Maybe the Council are part funding that capacity up-grade too.

I thought the move back to Stade Minimes-Arnaune was the most interesting thing to come out of that too. Keen to know more about that............

I think they'd need a hybrid pitch at Ernest Wallon for all year round use...........you know what those rugger ###### types are like for scrummaging away any grass

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My question is who is going to benefit the entrance fees. because this Ernest wallon facilities do not belong to the city. it belongs to the "Friends of Stade Toulousain" (if I am still uptodate). Even if the council finance a new hybrid grass… I would not take for grated that the Money generated by TO (and the English fans of Super League, if Super League...) goes 100% to the club...

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Getting into bed with the Rah-Rahs is fraught with danger, best to steer well clear, I thought some mentioned another ground that might be suitable?

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2 hours ago, Clogiron said:

Getting into bed with the Rah-Rahs is fraught with danger, best to steer well clear, I thought some mentioned another ground that might be suitable?

Yeah Stade Struxiano where the lower level teams used to play 

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5 hours ago, Fabou said:

My question is who is going to benefit the entrance fees. because this Ernest wallon facilities do not belong to the city. it belongs to the "Friends of Stade Toulousain" (if I am still uptodate). Even if the council finance a new hybrid grass… I would not take for grated that the Money generated by TO (and the English fans of Super League, if Super League...) goes 100% to the club...

This is always the worry. Playing elsewhere, compared to your own ground as per the original plan, can severely hamper your revenue streams and could hold back the club in the long run.

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The above picture showing the two respective chairmen arm-in-arm at Stade Ernest Wallon is eye catching. When the Dragons arrived in Perpignan the chairman of USAP Paul Goze would have no truck with the treize. He fought the Perpignan City Council when Bernard Guasch wanted to develope the new Puig Aubert stand behind the posts at Gilbert Brutus. Goze wanted the money to extend the capacity at Aime-Giral instead. That new facility in-time has proved a huge success for the Dragons.

Edited by audois
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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Great to see Sebastien Raguin back involved at TO. Will be part of the Elite 1 Juniors/Seniors set-up when they return to Stades Minimes next season. Who can remember his great try at Huddersfield in the Challenge Cup semi-final against Leeds in 2005. He was a regular Elite 1 player before moving to the Dragons in 2007 where he played 138 Super League games.

Sébastien-RAGUIN-entre-les-deux-co-Présidents-de-lassociation-du-TO-F.-MOREAU-et-P.-LAGARDE-©-TO-XIII.png

Edited by audois
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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I am sure that Big Seb is happier in his new position than he was working as a city parking ticket inspector back in 2005.

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It’s done, ‘ca va se faire’ - the hybrid pitch. Full page interview of Stade Toulousain Chairman Didier Lacroix in todays ‘L’Equipe’. The very last question posed was about the new pitch to be installed at their Ernest Wallon base. He said that with more usage of the pitch it was necessary. « The womens’ team will play their matches there as well Toulouse Olympioque XIII - who we will become a partner »

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"It involves matters much greater than drafting the new rules...the original and existing games have their own powerful appeal to their players and public and have the sentiments which history inspires"  - Harold 'Jersey' Flegg 1933

"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."  - Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

Si tu( Remi Casty) devais envoyer un fax au Président Guasch? " Un grand bravo pour ce que vous avez fait,et merci de m 'avoir embarqué dans cette aventure"

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

gallery_02-am31503_5b827265940b7_.jpg

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7 minutes ago, audois said:

It’s done, ‘ca va se faire’ - the hybrid pitch. Full page interview of Stade Toulousain Chairman Didier Lacroix in todays ‘L’Equipe’. The very last question posed was about the new pitch to be installed at their Ernest Wallon base. He said that with more usage of the pitch it was necessary. « The womens’ team will play their matches there as well Toulouse Olympioque XIII - who we will become a partner »

As long as they have a good deal and can earn revenues from the ground in return for giving up their own ground and the associated revenue that they could have achieved as a result of that.

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29 minutes ago, Damien said:

As long as they have a good deal and can earn revenues from the ground in return for giving up their own ground and the associated revenue that they could have achieved as a result of that.

Their current ground is a municipal ground, they don't own it.  They got some extra revenue from selling beer (from the little pop-up tents at the ground).  The big fixed bar next to where most of the away supporters were, was run by the ground, not TO, so they got no revenue from it. I would always try and have a word with the away supporters so that they could (by getting tanked up) support TO a bit better by not buying from the big bar.

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1 minute ago, kiggy said:

Their current ground is a municipal ground, they don't own it.  They got some extra revenue from selling beer (from the little pop-up tents at the ground).  The big fixed bar next to where most of the away supporters were, was run by the ground, not TO, so they got no revenue from it. I would always try and have a word with the away supporters so that they could (by getting tanked up) support TO a bit better by not buying from the big bar.

Any revenue they could have generated is more than nothing though and at a redeveloped ground the opportunity would have been more. Many French clubs of all codes play at municipal grounds like Catalans, USAP etc and get revenue. Toulouse Olympique playing at Stade Toulouse could be in danger of limiting their earning potential in comparison playing at a rented ground owned by another club if they aren't allowed to profit from matches there bar ticket sales.

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2 hours ago, audois said:

It’s done, ‘ca va se faire’ - the hybrid pitch. Full page interview of Stade Toulousain Chairman Didier Lacroix in todays ‘L’Equipe’. The very last question posed was about the new pitch to be installed at their Ernest Wallon base. He said that with more usage of the pitch it was necessary. « The womens’ team will play their matches there as well Toulouse Olympioque XIII - who we will become a partner »

Just to clarify - the money that had been earmarked for State des Minimes is now being used to upgrade the union stadium, which TO will be playing out of.

So what do TO get, apart from being at permanent risk of being asked to move out by the rahrahs? Especially if a new Chair takes over.

At absolute minimum you'd be asking the council to upgrade Minimes to a state of the art training facility for TO and it's junior sections. Is anything like this being done?

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"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."

Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

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I think the French have a different attitude to sharing grounds, more akin to say the Italian's, i e Roma Lazio. Than we have in the UK.

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13 minutes ago, newbe said:

I think the French have a different attitude to sharing grounds, more akin to say the Italian's, i e Roma Lazio. Than we have in the UK.

Sharing on equal terms is completely different than one club renting off another.

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39 minutes ago, newbe said:

I think the French have a different attitude to sharing grounds, more akin to say the Italian's, i e Roma Lazio. Than we have in the UK.

That depends - is it a council-owned facility? Will both teams have long term leases? Or will TO be there on a year-by-year basis and potentially be told to sling their hook at a moment's notice?

Almost 124 years of history suggests we must always be guarded in our dealings with the other code.

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"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."

Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

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