Premiership clubs bring in lawyers over euro row
February 6, 2014
The future of the Heineken Cup is still shrouded in uncertainty © PA Photos
Premiership Rugby (PRL) is seeking legal advice after the Heineken Cup organisers withheld tournament appearance payments.
European Rugby Cup Ltd - the body in charge of the European tournament - said on Wednesday evening it would not release any payments until the next meeting of the ERC in a fortnight.
This latest move appears to plunge the future of top-flight European club rugby into an even deeper limbo. The second instalment of five seasonal appearance payments is already overdue.
The Aviva Premiership clubs are owed £1.58m in this batch of Heineken Cup appearances fees, with Wales' four regions awaiting £663,000. Regional Rugby Wales is thought to have drawn an emergency bank loan after the ERC payment did not materialise.
PRL said: "We believe this inflames the issues we have in coming to a European solution and the next step is for Premiership Rugby to take advice to see if this action represents a fundamental breach in the contract between ERC and its clubs."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
The latest Week in Pictures takes in all the action from the weekend when rugby united behind Samoa
England broke their losing streak, but this was not them clawing their way back among the best, writes Tom Hamilton
Wales were just 13 minutes from a famous victory, but the lessons to be learned in defeat are almost exactly the same as those from previous near-misses, writes Huw Richards
Ahead of England's clash with Samoa, Scrum Sevens takes a wander down memory lane and celebrates seven examples of Pacific Islands magic