Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


1872 Cup grows legs

© Scottish Rugby Blog

The ancient inter-city rugby rivalry between Edinburgh and Glasgow will be given an extra leg to make it a best of three series.

Following the Pro14 expansion this season, the teams will now face each other three times and these games will be used to resolve the fate of the cup.

Edinburgh host the opening leg of the 1872 Cup this Saturday 23rd December at BT Murrayfield (kick-off 5.10pm) and in a welcome return to the festive back-back matches the sides will play the return leg a week later at Scotstoun on Saturday 30 December (kick-off 3.15pm). The third leg of the series will take place on the final week of the regular season (27/28/29 April) back at BT Murrayfield, which Glasgow fans may or may not be delighted about.

Should the series be tied – it happens, just ask the Lions – the 1872 Cup winner will be determined by aggregate score across all three games, followed by most tries and then total points scored. If we are still deadlocked after that, the holder will retain the trophy.

There is talk of a record crowd for the first leg and the second leg at Scotstoun will be a sellout as usual. The only question remaining is, who will win? We’ll take a look at that later in the week when the teams are announced on Thursday.

To keep you going, you can watch Edinburgh v Krasny Yar, possibly in Russian:

(thanks to Rich for the link)

55 Responses

  1. Yes, time for an interesting head to head. Hard to call frankly, Glasgow below their best, Embra with a head of steam up. Let’s forget the European side shows, Glasgow were playing giants, Embra for all their worth, were playing pygmies. Time to tell.
    I think I expect Embra to win leg one at Murrayfield and so burst Warriors League bubble, and I expect a reaction at Scotstoun.

    So for me, one each.

    That’s enough fence sitting for tonight.

  2. Looking forward to this. Edinburgh are on a good run, but have not put away any of the better teams, so this will be a good marker. A win here and then hopefully over the Kings in Jan will hopefully keep the momentum running into a tough set of 8 games that include Leinster, Ulster (x2), Munster, Scarlets and Glasgow (again). If they manage to hold their league position through that, I’ll be fairly impressed.
    A number of tasty battles to be fought here, so hopefully both teams can put out a strong 23.

  3. As a Glasgow supporter, this is all about the league for me – diddy cup is a bit of a sideshow, and is further devalued by allowing both of Edinburgh home games to count.

    Edinburgh will no doubt make this one of the small handful of league games that they actually turn up for each season, so I expect Murrayfield to be tough and we’ll miss the pace of Hogg to exploit the space. Think Edinburgh will squeeze home in the first game, but no try bonus pts and a losing bonus to Glasgow, with a 5 pointer to follow as Scotstoun.

    Merry Xmas

    1. Of course as a Glasgow supporter it’s all about the league for you – you’re out of Europe!! I think you’ll find that for the majority of Scottish Pro14 supporters the 1872 cup is the one that matters. Of course if Edinburgh win both of these next two games then your opinion that “it’s all about the league” is a bit disingenuous as that will severely dent the Warriors league ambitions.
      Of course you are allowed to be confident – 10/10 in the league is impressive. But your arrogance is astounding. Oh bless, your missing the great Stuart Hogg – so you’ll probably lose as Edinburgh “squeeze home”. The fact that the Glasgow pack have failed against Exeter, Leinster and Montpellier does not worry you? Not to mention scraping past Cardiff, Connacht and Cheetahs in the league.
      I can see Edinburgh winning both games in close matches, because Glasgow forwards cannot secure enough ball.

      1. That’s a bit of an overreaction to a fairly innocuous comment! And I’d like to see the data to support your claim that the majority of Scottish Pro14 supporters only care about the 1872. It’s not got the cachet of a championship cup, for example. I actually want both teams to do well, so the 1872 Cup games are a lose/lose for me…! Also, I don’t think the pack have failed in those matches, it seems more like they’re too eager to go wide and go for the risky offload than phase play.

      2. It’s all getting a bit tasty! I would say that it is not “Glasgow forwards cannot secure enough ball” it is that they don’t. If they did/when they do, Glasgow can be almost unstoppable. An interesting problem for Cockerill, but Edinburgh won’t be scared.

      3. Yeah, Champions Cup campaign a bit of a damp squib for us after the excitement of last year, but there always next year I suppose.

        Given that the majority of Scottish Pro14 supporters are Glasgow supporters, I’m not sure you’ve got your stats right, but I can certainly understand why from an Edinburgh supporters perspective you see it as the one that really matters….I feel the same way about the glass flower vase Scotland keep winning against Australia…we didn’t want the world cup, what we really wanted was the vase.

      4. Nope Andy N is right Merlot, I suspect he speaks for the majority of Glasgow supporters.
        I have little interest in beating a club we share everything with, including a desire to see Edinburgh do well.
        But we want to win the 1872 in order to protect our league position as you say, and for me that is miles more important than a rivalry that most Glasgow fans don’t really feel at the moment.
        Sorry but true.
        I reckon Edinburgh could keep the game tight in the pack and with our current profligacy that concerns me, though I still think we’ll win the cup!

      5. I, in a lot of ways agree with BenLui, as an Edinburgh fan if we can’t win the league…..just going to leave that sentence there for a minute…..then I would want Glasgow to win it, as it’s better for the Scottish game overall.

        Don’t get me wrong I hope we destroy Glasgow in the cup, because I’m sick of the stick Edinburgh get from some Glasgow fans around how crap we are by comparison, which for a number of years has sadly been accurate. Also it would continue our winning run and we could do with the points to help us push up the group.

        In terms of the game, on paper Glasgow should win this. Edinburgh have arguably a better pack, however from 9 back Glasgow are streets ahead. That’s not to say Edinburgh’s backline is poor, there is real quality there, but with Price and Russell controlling the game, we just don’t have the same quality in those positions.
        Will be interesting though to see if Seymour plays, it can’t have gone unnoticed that of late he’s been so far off his normal form. He could easily be targeted as a potential weak link in the Glasgow team. He’s potentially going to be up against Hoyland, who seems to have taken Cockers criticism of him to heart and has been superb in the last couple of games, I appreciate the opposition hasn’t been the greatest, but he’s looking for work and beginning to show his quality.

      6. 2 league losses to Edinburgh won’t dent our ambitions, in fact 2 losses will leave Glasgow where they are now such as the momentum Glasgow have. I’ll go on a limb and say after this double header Edinburgh’s main aim will to try and finish 4th in their conference. Edinburgh have played no-one of note recently. Glasgow have “scraped” as you put it, try bonus point wins against Cardiff and Connacht and are still the only team to beat Cheetahs in SA, with a try bonus point to boot. Keep up the good work though, and don’t let the face cloth miss any egg on your cheeks come hogmany.

        Glasgow to win both games with TBP’s and room for Russell to have a cigar midway through each half at Scotstoun.

  4. Excellent stuff. This is exactly why derby fixtures are needed now. As an Exile I am neutral, but hoping for two really competitive games.

  5. On a high level look at the teams on paper I’d say the following:
    Front row – about equal depending on who’s fit for either team.
    Second row – about equal as well.
    Back row – for me Edinburgh win this one.
    Half backs – Glasgow with room to spare (unless the ball is slow and Finn takes a few early hits and tries forcing the game, see comment about back row above).
    Centres – Glasgow.
    Back three – Glasgow again.

    So for me it is up to the Edinburgh forwards to slow Glasgow’s ball and make sure they are ferocious in defence.

    Hopefully Connacht and Munster can take points off Ulster and we can end up in 3rd place following the festive period.

  6. The Warriors are overrated and bound to be found out soon. Doubt that they will cope with the Gunners’ set piece. If it becomes a scrap on the deck doubt that the Glasgow back row will compete with Edinburgh’s.

    If it’s BKH v RJ at 15, I think we will get the upper hand there to. Time to give the weegies a good spanking!

    1. Glasgow overrated, Are you being serious here!?! They are 10 from 10 with 8 bonus points. That isn’t overrated that is just class. There is a reason that most of the Scottish players come from Glasgow mate ;)
      Price, Russell, L.Jones, Dunbar, H.Jones, Sarto, Jackson.

      That back line is packed with flare with some genuine international level players. Edinburgh do not stand a chance if it is a fast flowing game.

      Brown, Gray, Cummings, Gibbins, The Nuke, Wilson, Kebble, Fagerson x 2 Those forwards ain’t too bad either. On paper looking at league form Glasgow win the cup. End of!

      1. Glasgow have been good but not great. They can play some jinky stuff granted but have been found out as light-weight across the team when playing in Europe. They will do well to make the final of the Pro14. It’s the sanctimonious “People Make Glasgow” (I mean what does that even mean!) stuff that really cranks my gears. A team full of cheekie chappies who need to grow up and stop trying to play like the Harlem Globe Trotters. Would be joyous to see them being brought down a peg or two.

      2. Fast flowing rugby that is ripping teams in the Pro 14 apart. Yeah such a problem! They have Dave Rennie as coach of course they are going to play a fast flowing chaos game. It is the same style that Scotland play and as we have seen in the Autumn it is doing wonders not only for the team but the supporters as it is a joy to watch.

        Rugby is there for entertainment and Glasgow have you on the edge of your seat every they get their style of rugby going. There is nothing worse then an arm wrestle of a game. It is slow and boring. Glasgow have struggled in Europe because players haven’t fronted up. I will be the first to admit we are missing Strauss etc. Also Glasgow has had a ridiculous injury list so far.

        Finally yes Edinburgh have the cup from last season. Last season Glasgow had one focus Europe. Also and most importantly last years results don’t mean anything on this years season. Bringing it up is a bit of a mute point.

  7. I think glasgows fitness will come through in the last 20 and edge it and expect alot of pressure to be put on Blair Kinghorn from the highball

    1. He’s 6’5, I have no doubt he’ll be fine under the highball.

      Also not sure Edinburgh have a fitness issue. Cockerill’s approach isn’t exactly renowned for letting players off easily fitness wise, so whilst Glasgow are a fit team, Edinburgh are right up there.

  8. I cannot pick a winner in this one. Logic says that Glasgow should have too much in the backs for Edinburgh, even with the better forwards that Edinburgh have, but until the teams are named it’s pointless trying to forecast.

    That said if Gibbins is back for Glasgow I would tip the scales in their favour.

  9. Nice to see some sparky inter-city banter before the 1872 starts. I’m an Edinburgh supporter so it would be good if we could regain the trophy. That said, for me this is all about not the 72 trophy but about intense competition between our two clubs to prepare the Test side for Cardiff in February. A bit like the old Blues v Reds trial games if you like.
    So, good luck to both teams. And I hope there will be no injuries to affect the Test side.

  10. Good grief, has someone been at the Christmas Sherry already? All getting a bit Welsh Twitter in here is it not?

    Glasgow have obviously failed to fire in Europe, but have played three of the strongest sides in the competition. Edinburgh have flown in Europe, but have played Krasny Yar, who could be described as the Challenge Cup equivalent of Zebre in the old Heineken Cup, and a London Irish outfit seemingly doomed to relegation from the Aviva even before Christmas.

    League form would indicate that Glasgow should be getting that 11th notch on their belts. Glasgow have beaten Leinster, Munster, Cheetahs garnering 8 BP’s along the way. Edinburgh have lost to Leinster and the Cheetahs, as well as losing to Benetton and squeaking past Zebre, getting 4 BP. Glasgow may not get quick ball in Europe, but they do in the Pro14, and they have hurt teams with it.

    Question is, how much momentum & confidence have Edinburgh generated through the Challenge Cup wins, and how quickly can Glasgow rediscover their Pro14 mojo?

    Edinburgh will require a huge effort up front to disrupt Price & Russell at half back. Will they have the fitness levels or squad strength to do this for the full 80? Yes, Glasgow will miss Hogg, every side would, but Jackson has been a more than able deputy. More important is the presence of Gibbins in the Glasgow back row – I think if he had played then the Montpellier games may have gone differently, and if he plays this week then Glasgow are in the box seat such has been his influence this season.

    So my boys and I will be cheering Glasgow on, sitting with our Edinburgh supporting friends, hopefully enjoying the spectacle of 2 good sides going toe-to-toe in front of a record crowd. See you there!

    1. Indeed it is. As long as it doesn’t turn into the same backward crap we see in Scottish club football. Keep it feisty but refraine from hatred and foul abuse I’d say.

      1. Hear hear! That’s one of the reasons I love rugby, it has none of the tribalism or posturing that football has, but it has a culture of respect. However…….I have noticed of late there has been little examples of football-type behaviour creeping in; play acting, calls for yellow cards, players chirping at the ref, and even a bit of bad blood in the crowd. I sincerely hope it doesn’t go any further and effective steps are taken to stamp it out.

      2. I know exactly what you mean. It’s depressing to read much that’s written on the BBC Have Your Say Scottish football threads. The last couple of seasons at Murrayfield have made me wonder whether some of the wendyball behaviour has found its way into Scottish international rugby support – I’m thinking of booing and whistling opposition kickers mainly. By contrast, Ireland fans though fervently supporting their team always shut it for opposition penalties. At the other end of the scale are France supporters, who are almost comical in their mass hissing and booing at oppo penalty time. I’d like to see the Murrayfield crowd at the Ireland end of the spectrum.

  11. As a Glasgow fan who has been impressed so far with Cockers and what he has done in Edinburgh, can’t wait until Saturday. Ought to be a cracker – hope there are a pile of tries.

    1. Without my reading goggles , I thought you wrote ‘a pile of pies’. Now where can i sign up for that !!

  12. Edinburgh are in a great place and Glasgow have under performed in Europe ! Really ! I thought the tries in the away rubber with Montpellier were inspiring.

    For me Edinburgh is about the form of McInally, Toolis and Watson. Glasgow are dangerous if they get a lose kick or turnover. Otherwise they need to build pressure.

    The winner will do the basics well and stay out of the bin. The referee is Frank Murphy IRFU and it will be his 10th competition match. Let’s hope he is in the form of his life as well.

    This is one that Bill McLaren would have called ‘gladiatorial combat’.

  13. Fantastic to hear that Mark Bennett looks like he’ll be making a comeback this weekend – would be unbelievable to have him back in the mix for the 6 nations.

    Watching these derbies is always a bit weird – on one hand you’re looking for your team to knock seven bells out of the opposition, whilst at the same time, not wanting them to hit them too hard. You want your team to win, but not to humiliate the opposition because it’s a short turnaround to 6 nations, and we want all of our boys to be high on confidence.

  14. The great thing for me is here you all are, giving it large and for once there’s much more than the cup at stake. Weegies, can they continue their league run, I recall on an earlier thread someone saying they could see out 2017 league unbeaten (when would we have considered that a possibility for any Scottish side). For Embra, one or two wins and hope the Irish knock lumps out of each other to boost their Conference hopes. Plenty for everyone to smile about.

    As always with things rugby in Scotland ??????? some setbacks, but overall 2017 has been a huge step forward. IMO the glass is half full, rather than half empty.

    What I want more than anything else, including the CC, is a win (preferably with style) on match one of the Six Nations.

    1. Doesn’t matter if glass is half full or half empty. There is still room for more so bring on the 1872 and then the 6 nations!

  15. I have to admit to a feeling a little troll-like. My comment to Andy N was based on nothing more than a desire to increase the (friendly) rivalry between the two Scottish sides. Seems to have done the trick.
    There has always been an East-West thing in Scotland and the fact that the Weegies are a little defensive means that they are scared, even with ten from ten!

    1. Defensive, I think the word you are looking for is apprehensive, Glasgow have 10 from 10 and playing a team who have nothing to loose. It is hard to communicate how that feels.

  16. Looking forward to a hell of a first game. I’m a Glasgow supporter but I’ve always thought of the 1872 as a bit of a Scotland trial ahead of the 6 nations. Its always interesting to see if someone unexpectedly catches they eye. I think I’m with most on here that the Edinburgh forwards could edge it but the Glasgow backs are the most complete attacking unit. That of course assumes everyone is fully fit and on their game which is rare. Actually hard to be sure right now who will start the first game in either team. Forecast is windy with a wet ball so I’d expect open chaos.

  17. Guys, I know this isn’t the place to register this complaint and I’m going to sound like a raging alcoholic, but please can we make the following point as loud and clear as possible to the SRU:


    I was at the AVIVA (Dublin) in November and their Compass Group staff had a well organised system, churning out pints of Guinness with fans having to wait approx 5 minutes for a pint at half time.

    It’s a bloody embarrassing aggravation – the amount of match viewing we miss out on, and annoying interruptions we have to put up with as time after time after time after time as we’re trying to enjoy the national anthem or the game.

    Perhaps the SRU invest in a catering provider who is able to provide a mobile beer service to your seat, or serve 2 litre beers (Bavarian Octoberfest style!)? I’m not an expert but as a match day supporter it’s just not good enough.

    Rant over.

    1. I was at the Scotland v all blacks game and didn’t have to wait more than 4 minutes to be served before game and at half time thought personally it was a well run queuing system.

  18. From an Edinburgh point of view I think the team will look something like:

    1. Sutherland – probably our best LH, certainly pre injury he was pushing Dicko for his place. Still shaking off some of the rust of being out so long, but a cracking LH.
    2. McInally – Form hooker in Scotland, will likely be captain
    3. McCallum – He’s done well, and is probably our best fit TH
    4. Toolis – goes without saying
    5. Gilco/McKenzie – Can’t decide here, McKenzie is club captain, but Gilco is probably the better player and is beginning to show the form that was catching the eye before his string of injuries.
    6. Ritchie – Glasgow play quick and loose, Ritchie is a nightmare for the opposition at the breakdown and will slow the ball down when needed and is pretty handy for a turnover
    7. Watson – Legend
    8. CDP – Mata is great in the loose, but as I say Glasgow are probably better in the loose, so let’s not play our game to suit them.
    9. SHC – Almost went for Kennedy here, but I think SHC is probably slightly the better player, wouldn’t be upset to see either Kennedy or SHC start though
    10. Jaco – He’s over his illness apparently, and is first choice 10
    11. DVDM – This will be his first real test for the club since signing, he’s quick and massive, certainly won’t be pleasant to play against
    12. Burliegh – Probably our best 12 currently. Dean has done really well there and it’s probably his best position going forward, but Burleigh’s control and overall game is better
    13. JJ/Dean – Both are pretty similar, would be happy with either but I think JJ will get the nod.
    14. Hoyland – Since Cockerill’s criticism he’s come back into the side with a man looking to prove a point. Whilst the opposition hasn’t been the best (LI and Krasny) you can’t fault his workrate and how he’s played. Think he should start.
    15. Kinghorn – When fit, he’s going to be in the side. He’s rapid, got a cracking step and an eye for a gap. Needs to improve his decision making at times, but he’s only 20 and in his 2nd season as a pro.

    1. I really want to see Graham and Bennett on the bench. Real shame Fruean had to retire – he would’ve been epic in these games.

      1. Far enough

        In my defence, I thought Berghan was still injured and I don’t think Mata and CDP will work particularly well together as I think they are too similar.

        With that said, will be incredibly happy to be proven wrong on that one.

  19. Well I’ve done it now – SuperBru prediction is Edinburgh by 5 points…

    But then as I’m in the bottom quartile of the Scottish Rugby Blog league, what do I know?!

    1. I’ve also predicted Edinburgh by 5, and I’m nearer the top end, so hoping you’re right! (And I’m a Glasgow man…)

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