Preview: Stade Français v Montpellier

27th Sep 2013, 14:41

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Clash in Paris: Montpellier are ambitious

Clash in Paris: Montpellier are ambitious

Stade Français host Montpellier in a clash between two in-form sides riding a wave of confidence at Stade Jean-Bouin on Friday.

Stade Français host Montpellier in a clash between two in-form sides riding a wave of confidence at Stade Jean-Bouin on Friday.

Something has to give.

Like their hosts on Friday, Montpellier are always strong at home but have learnt to produce the good on the road this season, so we're in for a good contest.

Last week's 40-point win over giants Clermont was the most impressive result of the season - even more so than their 25-0 drubbing of Toulouse - and underlined Montpellier's credentials as genuine title contenders.

The hosts are also in great form, coming off the back of three straight wins and are unbeaten at home this term. The Parisians have won eight and draw one in the last nine clashes between these sides in the French capital.

Stade have made four changes to the side that beat Oyonnax last week, all in the pack as prop Heinke van der Merwe, hooker Laurent Sempere, lock Gerhard Mostert and loose forward Pierre Rabadan all return to the starting XV.

Montpellier have lined up the same starting team that thrashed Clermont last week.

Stade Français: 15 Hugo Bonneval, 14 Julien Arias, 13 Geoffrey Doumayrou, 12 Paul Williams, 11 Djibril Camara, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Julien Dupuy, 8 Sergio Parisse, 7 Pierre Rabadan, 6 Scott Lavalla, 5 Pascal Pape, 4 Gerhard Mostert , 3 Rabah Slimani, 2 Laurent Sempere, 1 Heinke van der Merwe.
Replacements: 16 Aled de Malmanche, 17 David Attoub, 18 Alexandre Flanquart, 19 Antoine Burban, 20 Jerome Fillol, 21 Jonathan Danty, 22 Jerome Porical, 23 Sakaria Taulafo,

Montpellier: 15 Anthony Floch, 14 Timoci Nagusa, 13 Anthony Tuitavake, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Yoan Audrin, 10 Francois Trinh-Duc, 9 Jonathan Pelissie, 8 Alex Tulou, 7 Alexandre Bias, 6 Fulgence Ouedraogo, 5 Thibaut Privat, 4 Bobins Tchale watchou, 3 Maximiliano Bustos, 2 Mickael Ivaldi, 1 Yvan Watremez.
Replacements: 16 Charles Geli, 17 Nicolas Mas, 18 Johan Aliouat, 19 Kelian Galletier, 20 Benoit Paillaugue, 21 Thomas Combezou, 22 Benoit Sicart, 23 Naama Leleimalefaga.

Results last season: Stade Français 32-16 Montpellier; Montpellier 54-16 Stade Français
Prediction: Stade are very strong at home. Stade Français by six points
Kick-off: 20.45
Referee: C. Lafon