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Clerc predicting ‘fantastic’ 2020-21 Top 14 season

Vincent Clerc is anticipating a “fantastic” 2020-21 Top 14 season after the previous campaign was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Bordeaux Begles were eight points clear at the summit with nine games of the regular season remaining when the action was brought to a halt.

The season was scrapped at the end of last month and it is hoped the best teams in France will be back on the field to start again in September.

Former France wing Clerc is expecting big things when rugby union returns in his homeland and thinks the 2019-20 competition was nicely poised for a gripping finale.

He told Stats Perform: “Who impressed me last season? There are players, of course, but if I have to choose a team, it’s Bordeaux. They had a fantastic season.

“They are the Top 14 leaders. We have also seen an amazing start for Bayonne. Before the break, Toulouse were coming back. I think it was an undecided/uncertain season.

“This year, Toulon also had a good season. So it was a nice championship this year. I am looking forward to see it starting again.

“I think next season can be fantastic, because the 2019-20 season was very enjoyable. I am looking forward to the next season.”

Clerc says the players will need some game time before next season begins.

“No, they [the players] can’t be at 100 per cent [in September]. Maybe there will be some friendly games,” he added. 

“But if there is no friendly game, the physical preparation and the training sessions will never replace the matches. So they will need some matchdays to find their pace, to find the right intensity.

“Everybody will return to the competition, everybody will try some things and find their balance. But it will take some matchdays, for sure.”

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