Leinster heavy favorites to win 2023 European Rugby Champions Cup

  • Leinster (-115) is the title favorite heading into a Round of 16 matchup with Ulster
  • La Rochelle (+500) and Toulouse (+450) are also in the mix after winning in 2021 and 2022
  • Dublin’s Aviva Stadium hosts the Heineken Champions Cup final on Saturday, May 20th, 2023

The European Rugby Champions Cup enters the knockout stage on March 31 with 16 elite clubs going head-to-head for a chance to advance to the quarter-finals in early April. After losing in last year’s finals, Leinster is the favorite to capture the title for the first time in five seasons. But it won’t be easy. The Round of 16 is loaded with eight former Champions Cup winners.

Before we look at the odds and make our picks, check out the top rugby betting sites in 2023. You can also stay up to date with the latest betting tips on the 2023 Rugby Union World Cup.

European Champions Cup Odds

TeamBetOnline Review
La Rochelle+500

Leinster open as favorites

Leinster (-115) has claimed the European Rugby Champions Cup on four occasions, but not since the 2017/18 season. The Irish club was defeated 24-21 by La Rochelle (+500) in a hard-fought final last year. They enter the Round of 16 stage atop Pool A with a perfect 4-0 record while outscoring opponents by 150 points in its four pool games.

On April 1, they will host fellow Irish club Ulster (+10000), which finished the pool stage 1-3 with a minus-39 point deficit. With a victory in that one likely, Leinster will then enjoy home-field advantage in the quarter-finals when they play the winner of the Leicester (+2500) vs. Edinburgh (+8000) match.

Toulouse and La Rochelle

Toulouse (+450) lost to Leinster in the semi-final last season. The rugby powerhouse is looking for its sixth Heineken Champions Cup title. After going 4-0 in the pool stage, they secured the No. 2 seed in Pool B behind La Rochelle (+500), who had a slightly better point differential (+63 to +57).

Both these French clubs are juggernauts that have won the past two championships. La Rochelle rebounded from a finals defeat to Toulouse in 2021 with a victory over Leinster last season. La Rochelle also downed the Irish club in the 2021 semi-finals.

Leinsterto win Champions Cup
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Toulouseto win Champions Cup
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Other Cup contenders

Leinster, Toulouse and La Rochelle have dominated European Rugby over the past 15 seasons. However, two English teams have captured the title in recent years.

Exeter (+1600) won the championship in 2000 and Saracens (+800) claimed three titles in a four-year span between 2016 and 2019. Both ended pool play with three victories and a loss, but Exeter had a 71-point surplus compared to just 26 for Saracens. While the Cell C Sharks (+1400) recorded three Ws in pool play, the South African club is not on the level of the top European teams.

Best Bet

Leinster outscored Racing 92 and Gloucester by a combined 152 points in their four games (two each) in pool play, but they shouldn’t be viewed as unbeatable. Given the recent success of both Toulouse and La Rochelle, we think either French club is a stronger wager at +450 and +500, respectively.

La Rochelle could become the first team to advance to three-straight finals since Toulon claimed three Champions Cups in a row from 2013-2015.

La Rochelleto win Champions Cup
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Steve Starr

Steve is the quintessential American sports enthusiast. He has mastered the art of Sundays, devoting them to football, and barbecue parties. He proudly wears the hats of a good father, husband and a great dog owner. Aside from his decades of contributing to different top-tier sports publications, Steve has also found his niche on Twitter, where he publishes funny and relatable sports-related insights. When he's not busy tweeting, Steve loves to watch each game unfold live. He possesses an innate talent for finding humor in the sports world, appreciating both the thrilling moments and the comedic mishaps that make each event unique.