Diamond piles pressure on Toulon

Date published: October 20 2016

Sale Sharks Director of Rugby Steve Diamond says all the pressure will be on Toulon to get a result when the two teams meet in the Champions Cup on Friday.

Toulon are looking for their first win of the competition after losing their opening game at home against defending champions Saracens last week.

Diamond labelled the three-time European champions as the biggest team in the competition and said his team would be out to make life difficult for the visitors at the AJ Bell Stadium.

"Toulon are the biggest spending team in the world. They're the most successful side over the last five years and we're fortunate enough to have them in the group," Diamond said.

"You can see how prominent that is by the size of the crowd – there's 8,000 tickets sold and the Manchester public come out to watch the big teams. There's no bigger than Toulon. They have everything to do. They've got to come to Manchester on a wet, windy night to beat us and get a bonus point – so the pressure is on them."

Sale are also playing catch up after an opening round defeat. The Manchester side were beaten 28-11 by the Scarlets in West Wales.

But Diamond insists his men will learn from their European adventures and become a force to be reckoned with.

"All our young English lads are signed for three to four years, and we see this season as a bit of a transition. We're recruiting three, four or five world-class players over the next three months to come in next season, and we've got to make sure we qualify (for the European RugbyChampions Cup) again.

"The recruitment drive is made a lot easier when you're playing in this competition, because all coaches and players want to play in the best competition in the world."