Leicester Tigers fly-half George Ford has revealed that his team has been inspired by their footballing counterparts ahead of their Challenge Cup final against Montpellier.
Leicester City were crowned FA Cup champions for the first time last Saturday after they claimed a 1-0 win against Chelsea at Wembley Stadium.
Leicester’s rugby team have a final of their own to win in London and Ford told the Daily Mail that the Tigers will be looking to emulate the Foxes in Friday night’s encounter against Montpellier.
🗣 “You want to go and try and win a trophy against the best teams, and we’re certainly up against one…”@George_Fordy knows the #ChallengeCupRugby Final is a step up for @LeicesterTigers – can they do it? 🐯
— Challenge Cup (@ERChallengeCup) May 21, 2021
George Ford – ‘We’re unbelievably proud of what Leicester City did.’
“We as Leicester Tigers were unbelievably proud of what Leicester City did in the FA Cup. They went into the game as underdogs, which I think we are as well,” Ford said.
“Producing a performance like they did, the way they played, the courage they played with, the work-rate, the effort, the skill, in a big game on the big stage, was incredible to watch.
“It definitely inspires us seeing the football team beat a massive team like Chelsea in the FA Cup final, which they’d never won before. It was incredible.”
Montpellier slight favourites to claim Challenge Cup trophy.
Leicester, the most successful English club in history, have had a lean few years in regards to silverware, winning just one title – the Anglo-Welsh Cup in 2017 – over the last eight years.
The Tigers have consistently supplied England with plenty of players over the last decade or so, but the club has failed to reach its former lofty heights which saw them win 10 Premiership titles and two Heineken Cups.
Montpellier won the Challenge Cup back in 2016, but like Leicester, their star-studded team have failed to bring in as much success as their billionaire owner Mohed Altrad would have liked.
Who are you backing now?
— Challenge Cup (@ERChallengeCup) May 20, 2021
Both sides have plenty of internationals in their match-day squads, although Montpellier boast greater depth, with four Springboks named on the bench for the Challenge Cup final.
The French side are the bookies’ favourites for the encounter at Twickenham Stadium but have struggled domestically, sitting in 10th place in the Top 14 table.
Leicester have fared better in the Gallagher Premiership and sit in sixth place. The Tigers have improved massively on last season, having only avoided relegation thanks to Saracens being deducted 70 points due to breaching the league’s salary cap regulations.