The Tigers, who became the first club to win European club rugby’s most coveted trophy twice when they retained the silverware the following season by beating Munster, top Pool 3 with 15 points, just a point clear of Stade Français Paris.

Both clubs have won three from four and this is set to be the group quarter-final qualifying decider.

And England international wing Lloyd is quick to point out that the Paris side won 26-13 at Welford Road two seasons ago in a result that cost the Tigers a lucrative and prestigious place in the last eight.

“We do not have a great recent record against French teams we play in our final Pool matches of the Heineken Cup,” said Lloyd, the club’s leading try-scorer in the Heineken Cup with 19 from 46 appearances.

“Two years ago it was that match against Stade Français and then last season we lost at home to Biarritz Olympique and that defeat meant that while we did squeeze through to the quarter-finals, we had to travel rather than have a home tie.

“So we certainly do not want to leave it in the lap of the gods this time – we want to keep our quarter-final destiny in our own hands and that means producing the goods against Stade at Welford Road on Sunday.

“They beat us out in Paris in Round 2 in what was a scrappy game but I think this one will be a lot closer and very tense.

“We have got something to prove from that 12-6 defeat while both teams know that they have to win to leave their quarter-final chances looking good.”

The Tigers complete their Pool programme at ASM Clermont Auvergne and Stade Français Paris will have home advantage against the Ospreys the following weekend but Lloyd accepts “this is the big one”.

“They are a very dangerous side with a powerful set of forwards, many of whom, in particular their hooker, who run like backs and a backline full of pace.

“It is no exaggeration to say that they have strength from 1 to 22.

“They are also one of the very few French sides who travel well and win at big grounds – and I have to say that is a huge disappointment!

“They are not scared of going to places like Welford Road and Kingsholm, where they beat Gloucester last year, and that makes them even more dangerous.


“When they beat us two years ago we took our foot off the pedal while they played a very basic game, while last season all we needed to do was beat Biarritz for a home quarter-final and we failed to do that.

“This time we must make sure we get the result so that quarter-final qualification is down to us and nobody else.

“On a personal note I think I have scored more Heineken Cup tries against Stade Français than I have against any other team so I would love to keep that going on Sunday.”