Glasgow Warriors will play in the Heineken Champions Cup – European club rugby’s flagship tournament – next season, it has been confirmed. 

Danny Wilson’s side have been ranked eighth out of the eight PRO14 teams to make the cut, meaning that they are likely to face some tough matches against an assortment of the leading sides from across the continent when the fixture schedule for the pool stage of the competition is unveiled on a yet to be announced date.

It had been widely expected that Warriors would be involved in the Champions Cup next season after they finished fourth in one of the two PRO14 conferences this season, but a number of factors related to Covid and the possibility of South African sides joining the competition meant that it was not guaranteed until the PRO14 (currently in the process of being rebranded the United Rugby Championship) issued a statement yesterday lunchtime.

As it stands, the top eight teams from the PRO14, the Gallagher Premiership and the French Top14 will each qualify for next year’s Heineken Cup. The English and French rankings will be confirmed after their respective seasons end in two weekends’ time.

While the exact formats for next season of both the Champions Cup and the second-tier Challenge Cup (which will feature Edinburgh) have not yet been released, a list of key dates was published yesterday, revealing that there will be four pool games played between mid-December and mid-January, followed by four rounds of knock-out games culminating in the finals of both tournaments being played in Marseilles on the weekend of 27th and 28th May 2022.

“Discussions to finalise all details of the formats for next season, and future seasons, within the framework of the new shareholder agreement, are ongoing, and these discussions include the future participation of South African clubs in EPCR’s tournaments,” said a statement issued by the tournament organisers.