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Should the Champions Cup final be played in a neutral venue? | WEDNESDAY NIGHT RUGBY

Ruaidhri O'Connor dismissed the suggestion that the Champions Cup final should be moved to a neutral venue if Leinster were to make it there.



The Independent's Ruaidhri O'Connor dismissed the suggestion that the Heineken Champions Cup final should be moved to a neutral venue if Leinster were to make it to the showpiece.

The initial suggestion that Leinster are at an unfair advantage in Europe this year came from former England international Brian Moore in his column for The Telegraph.

Moore wrote: 'It is surely not right that any side should have four home games, including the final, when contesting Europe’s top club tournament. In particular, no club should have a home tie for a final.'

He went on to suggest that an alternate venue in Scotland or Wales should be made available as Leinster are set to have an unfair advantage by playing at home in a final.

Speaking on Wednesday Night Rugby, O'Connor rejected the idea entirely. "Are you then saying that Ireland should never host a final?" O'Connor questioned.

"A country that gives more to this tournament than any other country. Or [is Moore] saying that they should play it in Páirc Uí Chaoimh or Croke Park?"

Leinster's potential home final

While Leinster have undoubtedly earned their top position in European rugby by being consistently one of the best club teams in the Northern Hemisphere, O'Connor explained that success is not the reason that this year's European showpiece will be held in Dublin.

"It is only in the Aviva this year because it was supposed to be in [the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium], but Spurs have a match that weekend," O'Connor said.

"The IRFU basically swooped in to rescue the whole thing. It's not like it's some conspiracy against everyone else! I think the Aviva Stadium is a perfectly good place to have it!"

Leinster play Toulouse in their semi-final, also in Dublin, on April 29th. They first need to beat the French giants before a question of a neutral stadium could even realistically be considered.

"It's not like it's an automatic thing," O'Connor said. "They're not there yet!"

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