Lewis: French Franchise On Agenda

The league will revert to a franchise system rather than promotion and relegation, and talk has been of a second French side to join Les Catalans Dragons.

"One of the best things last year was the sight of so many English supporters coming to France for away games against the Catalans Dragons," he said.

"A decision will be taken about having 14 clubs in Super League by 2009. Of course, one of the things under consideration is having another French team in Super League."

Toulouse Olympique are favourites for the second French franchise, especially after having fought their way to the Challenge Cup semi-finals in 2005.

Catalans boss Mick Potter is pleased at the idea of another French side in Super League, saying, "It would be great to have another French team in Super League, whether it is Toulouse or someone else.

"I think it would be good for rugby league, because it's popular in France, and there is a good base down there in the south. The more success the Catalans have, the better it will be for French rugby league.

"If youngsters see Catalans doing well, they might want to start playing and then the national team will improve. This is especially important with the 2008 World Cup ahead."

The news comes as Leeds Rhinos have pushed for a Dublin franchise to be entered into Super League come the introduction of the franchise system.

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