Need to Know: Glasgow v Racing 92 Match Preview

KO 5.30 at Rugby Park, Saturday 23rd January
Live on Sky Sports

Team Talk
It’s The Return of the Jedi as Glasgow favourite James Eddie makes his first appearance since being yellow carded against Munster way back at the start of October. Even with James’ 121 Warriors games in the line-up this starting XV has only 575 previous appearances for Glasgow – very similar to the levels in the opening 4 games of the season when nearly half the squad was missing. With 4 losses in a row behind them (equalling the worst run under Gregor Townsend) the Weegies will be determined not to make it 5…


15 Stuart Hogg
14 Taqele Naiyarovoro
13 Alex Dunbar
12 Sam Johnson
11 Tommy Seymour
10 Finn Russell
9 Ali Price
15 Brice Dulin
14 Louis Dupichot
13 Henry Chavancy
12 Alexandre Dumoulin
11 Marc Andreu
10 Remi Tales
9 Maxime Machenaud (c)

1 Alex Allan
2 Shalva Mamukashvili
3 Sila Puafisi
4 Greg Peterson
5 Jonny Gray (c)
6 James Eddie
7 Simone Favaro
8 Leone Nakarawa

1 Julien Brugnaut
2 Camille Chat
3 Luc Ducalcon
4 Luke Charteris
5 Francois van der Merwe
6 Bernard Le Roux
7 Wenceslas Lauret
8 Chris Masoe

16 James Malcolm
17 Jerry Yanuyanutawa
18 Zander Fagerson
19 Scott Cummings
20 Chris Fusaro
21 Grayson Hart
22 Duncan Weir
23 Lee Jones

16 Virgile Lacombe
17 Davit Khinchagishvili
18 Cedate Gomes Sa
19 Thibault Dubarry
20 Juandre Kruger
21 Xavier Chauveau
22 Etienne Dussartre
23 Benjamin Dambielle

Glasgow Greetings:
Scott Cummings will make his European debut for the Warriors at the age of 19 years and 50 days. Only John Barclay (19 years and 27 days) was younger when making a first Champions Cup / Heineken Cup appearance for the club.

Matchday Milestones:
It’s the 25th game of his Glasgow career for loosehead prop Alex Allan. On the bench, Duncan Weir is in line to make his 100th career appearance, and he will become the 4th player this season to join the Warrior Centurions. There are already 6 Centurions in the current squad but Duncan will be the first back to reach that milestone (for a few weeks at least!)

Warriors One to Watch:
Ali Price. Making his 4th consecutive start the young man from King’s Lynn has taken his chance to make the breakthrough at scrum half this season – to the point where his name has been bandied about for Scotland squad selection. He’s shown all the basic attributes needed at 9 and as he gets used to the pace and intensity of play he’ll be more able to read the game and improvise successfully based on what is in front of him. He should certainly have an interesting evening with Leone Nakarawa playing 8 in front of him!

Head to Head:
Back 3 – ADV Glasgow
Centres – EVEN
Half Backs – EVEN
Front Row – ADV Racing
Second Row – EVEN
Back Row – ADV Racing
Subs – ADV Glasgow

Toony’s Track Record…

…against Top 14 teams in the Champions Cup:

    • 2 wins, 9 losses. 1 Try BP, 3 Losing BPs. 12 points in total out of a possible 55.
    • Racing have the chance to do the double over the Warriors – something Castres, Toulon and Toulouse have all managed before.
    • Montpellier are the only French side that Townsend’s men have won against – will that change on Saturday at Rugby Park?

Reaction to round 4:
How do you solve a problem like the maul? It was an issue that dogged Glasgow in their first match with Racing, allowing the French side to be far more efficient in taking their chances than the Weegies, and it was a similar story last week against Northampton. The Warriors primary tactic has to be to avoid giving away the penalties that allow their opponent to get into position to use the rolling maul. If they do have to face a lineout 5 metres out then they must be decisive and try and move the Racing pack backwards just as the maul is being created. Beyond that it will be all about accuracy in attack. This Glasgow attack is due to break out and score some tries – let’s hope this is the weekend it happens.

Racing 92:
Having achieved exactly what they needed against Glasgow at the Stade Yves-du-Manoir, Racing will feel it is job done and they’ve held back a number of their big names to protect them for the battles ahead. There are still potential gains to be made in terms of where a semi-final might be held, maintaining momentum and getting exposure for their squad. The Racing pack in particular remain a serious unit and they will look to continue where they left off, dominating the collisions at the breakdown and sapping Glasgow’s strength and will through the maul.

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)
Touch Judge 1: Luke Pearce (England)
Touch Judge 2: Peter Allan (England)
TMO: Trevor Fisher (England)
Citing Commissioner: John Byett (England)

Mr. Barnes has rarely been sighted at Glasgow’s games, taking charge of just one of their games in the past 2 seasons. He has a reputation for being a slightly fussy ref and his manner can appear officious at times but he is a very clear communicator and the players will be in no doubt what he expects of them.


  1. the maul – as you say we must move them back as soon as it forms. But we must then keep moving it back and not allow them a stall and reset, roll round the corner. The other key defensive used by better teams is to get an arm or 2 over the top to grab the ball carrier (but not jump on top Naka!). The selection of 3 locks on the starting pack suggests we might try this a bit more

    Liked by 1 person

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