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Heineken Cup
RFU to help break European deadlock
ESPN Staff
October 13, 2013

Rugby Football Union CEO Ian Ritchie will reportedly meet with the Celtic nations this week to help nurture progress over a new European competition.

At present, the Anglo-French clubs are showing no signs of backing down in their plans to push forward plans for the Rugby Champions Cup - a competition they claim is more meritocratic than the Heineken Cup and will be club-run rather than organised by the unions.

The RaboDirect PRO12 sides have been invited to join the new competition but the four unions that make up the league - Italy, Wales, Ireland and Scotland - are waiting to see if the tournament receives ratification from the International Rugby Board before declaring their respective hands.

But reports on Sunday claim Ritchie will help move discussions forward when he meets with the Celtic nations and Italy this week. This may help break the deadlock over the future of the competition with the English and French clubs saying they will not attend the proposed European Rugby Cup Ltd meeting on October 23 saying they feel the time for negotiation and compromise to be over.

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