Bath Rugby director of rugby Stuart Hooper says he is anticipating quality from all aspects of Stade Rochelais’ team when his side visit Stade Marcel Deflandre in the Heineken Champions Cup today.
Last season’s finalists La Rochelle were beaten 29-23 at home against Ulster Rugby in Round 1 but will be looking to get their Pool A campaign back on track against Bath, who lost 45-20 at Leinster Rugby.
Hooper highlighted the talent littering La Rochelle’s squad and the daunting task facing his team in Round 3.
“I think when we look through the La Rochelle team and the squad they’ve got, they’ve got big, dynamic, explosive players across the board – in the back line and in the forwards.
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“Certainly, I think some of our players in the back line have got fantastic potential and ability so what we need to do as a forward pack is make sure we can deliver a platform and then it’d be good to see our backs up against their backs.
“I think they’re a dangerous team. The threat they pose is genuinely across the board, they’re a team who from a forward perspective, they’ve got a big, dynamic forward pack.
“But equally in the backs they’ve got people who can break the gain line but move the ball. They genuinely do challenge you across the board physically and tactically.
“And I think the influence that their coaches have, their coaching team has, they want to play rugby and they want to challenge opposition, so they’re a strong team to play against for sure.”