Toulon dealt handy draw
Champions Toulon were handed an attractive-looking draw in the European Cup for the 2013/14 season.
Champions Toulon were handed an attractive-looking draw in the European Cup for the 2013/14 season, made in Dublin on Wednesday.
The Jonny Wilkinson-guided French Top 14 club, 16-15 winners over Clermont in the 2012/13 edition, were drawn in Pool Two alongside Cardiff, Glasgow and Exeter.
Beaten Cup finalists Clermont were drawn in Pool Four with Harlequins, Scarlets and Racing-Metro.
Clermont flank Julien Bonnaire said it was "always a shame to play another French club in the European Cup", notably one that has made a raft of big-name signings including Jonny Sexton and Jamie Roberts.
"We know Racing-Metro's qualities. They had ups and downs last season, but with the recruitment they're doing, they'll be present for next season," he said.
"Harlequins are a very good side, and the one that seems a little lower is Scarlets, a team we've played several times in the past - but you can't trust them."
English champions Leicester are in Pool Five with Ulster, Montpellier and Treviso.
Celtic League champions Leinster, the reigning Challenge Cup champions and three-time Cup winners, were handed a tough draw in Pool One with Northampton, Ospreys and recently-crowned French league champions Castres.
Four-time champions Toulouse and Saracens were drawn alongside Connacht and Zebre in Pool Three.
And in Pool Six, Munster face Perpignan, Edinburgh and Gloucester.
European Cup pool draw for the 2013/14 season made on Wednesday:
Pool 1: Leinster (IRL), Northampton (ENG), Ospreys (WAL), Castres (FRA)
Pool 2: Toulon (FRA), Cardiff Blues (WAL), Glasgow (SCO), Exeter (ENG)
Pool 3: Toulouse (FRA), Saracens (ENG), Connacht (IRL), Zebre (ITA)
Pool 4: Clermont (FRA), Harlequins (ENG), Scarlets (WAL), Racing Metro (FRA)
Pool 5: Ulster (IRL), Leicester (ENG), Montpellier (FRA), Treviso (ITA)
Pool 6: Munster (IRL), Perpignan (FRA), Edinburgh (SCO), Gloucester (ENG)