Chief exectutive David Davies is seeking to put a brave face on Edinburgh Rugby’s likely absence from the European Cup after an unbroken 16-year association with the continent’s most prestigious competition.
Only the top six in the RaboDirect PRO12 can expect to qualify for next season’s rebranded European Rugby Champions Cup, and Edinburgh are ten points adrift in seventh albeit with a game in hand.
In an interview marking exactly one year at the helm today, Davies spoke of possible consequences of Edinburgh dropping into the second-tier European Challenge Cup.
“Planning-wise for us next year if we end up in the middle-tier competition, that will be disappointing to an extent but it also means that we will be playing teams that we don’t normally play and it is an opportunity for fans to visit cities that they may not have been to previously,” he told Running Rugby magazine.
Davies also played down concerns about RaboDirect’s decision to pull out of their league sponsorship agreement a year early, insisting that, with broadcasting rights switching to Sky and Edinburgh having “BT” on their jerseys, the outlook is bright.
“With Sky and BT becoming more active across the entire landscape, I think the league has more strength in its arm now,” he said.