Edinburgh Rugby head coach Richard Cockerill insists the pressure is on Montpellier in their Heineken Champions Cup Pool 5 decider on Friday night – but stresses his side are ready to take the opportunity of a home quarter-final.
The Scottish side sit top of Pool 5 with 19 points, only three clear of second-placed Montpellier, as the teams prepare to meet at BT Murrayfield on Friday, live on BT Sport and beIN SPORTS.
A win for Edinburgh would secure a home quarter-final, but a defeat could see them exit the tournament at the expense of Montpellier, who could top the pool as a result.
When the sides met in Round 1, Montpellier came out on top, but Edinburgh claimed a losing bonus point and Cockerill believes that his side can finish the job and reach the quarter-finals for the first time since 2012 on Friday.
🔥 Are you as fired up as Cockers?
Edinburgh v Montpellier TOMORROW!
— Edinburgh Rugby (@EdinburghRugby) January 17, 2019
“We’ve given ourselves the opportunity to finish top of the group and to be at home in the quarter-finals, so I want us to take that opportunity,” Cockerill told Edinburgh Rugby’s official website.
“All the pressure will be on them – they’re the A-listers. They’ve won one of their last 13 away European games and that was at Glasgow, but they’ll have expectations to get out of this group.
“I’m going to back ourselves, however. They’ve got some great coaches and world-class players, but we’re going to do everything we can to win on Friday night and I believe we can do it if we get it right.”
— Heineken Champions Cup (@ChampionsCup) January 16, 2019
Edinburgh full-back Blair Kinghorn added that playing and beating another French side in RC Toulon in Round 5 could prove pivotal on Friday.
“Montpellier have a lot of world-class individuals, but they’re fairly similar to Toulon in terms of the fact that their forward pack is big and powerful,” said Kinghorn.
“We’ve looked at them and we’ll look at them in more detail as kick-off approaches, but it is quite helpful having played another big French team the week beforehand, while we took a lot of notes from the pool match against them before Christmas.
“I think it would be massive if both ourselves and Glasgow can get through to the knockout stages.”