The plan is to fly through the Championship: Toulouse & the pain of relegation

George Riley
Toulouse Olympique relegated Sylvain Houles SWpix

Photo: Paul Currie/SWpix

The mood at Toulouse “hasn’t been good” since their relegation back to the Championship but the French club remains determined to bounce straight back into Super League.

That’s the view of Olympique winger Matty Russell who admits it is sad to see the club’s huge effort in building to play in Super League “taken away” after just one season.

The French side will slip straight back into the second tier after just one season in the top flight, but the club’s hierarchy are already planning for an immediate return to ensure their absence is no longer than one year. 

“We have had a real dig this year and it has been tough,” said Russell, who may now leave the club this winter.

“I won’t lie, the last week hasn’t been good, everyone has been down but we are here to do a job so are turning up to train and trying to keep a smile on our face.

“It has been up and down and it is tough as some of these lads are local to Toulouse and have had a desire to play Super League all their lives.”

BRAVE: Matty Russell opens up on personal fight: I couldn’t see how bad it had got

Toulouse determined to come straight back up

Toulouse staged a mini-revival in the final third of the season but were unable to capitalise on temporarily leapfrogging Wakefield. Trinity instead finished strongly to preserve their Super League status.

Russell says he especially feels for the head coach Sylvain Houles; and believes more support should have been afforded the club to prevent them going straight back down.

“The coach has dreamt to coach Super League so to see that taken away from him is quite sad,” Russell told the Love Rugby League Podcast. “I’m sure the club and the team will build for next year.

“There is a lot of desire on next year and the club are moving forward to bounce straight back up.

“I’ve already spoken to the CEO and the coach. Their ambition is just to fly through the Championship and get a really good strong team to come back up. “

PODCASTMatty Russell opens up on overcoming gambling and alcohol demons & how Toulouse have reacted to Super League relegation

FOLLOW: Keep up with all the latest on the Love Rugby League mobile app and podcast