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Toulouse’s youngsters bring swagger back to Champions Cup hopefuls

The aristocrats of French rugby endured a spell in the wilderness but face Racing 92 feeling full of confidence

No team have appeared in more European Cup finals than Toulouse but after winning the last of the six, in 2010, the aristocrats of French rugby went into decline. It was slow at first, then steady, before gathering enough momentum to see them wallow in the Challenge Cup for the first time last season.

They were one place above the Top 14’s relegation zone in 2017 with only the bottom club, Bayonne, having a worse attacking record. Toulouse’s fall has been mirrored this season by that of another European powerhouse, Leicester. While the Tigers are still looking at how to reacquaint themselves with success, Toulouse, unbeaten in their last 14 matches in their domestic league and top of the table, did it by investing in the future.

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