1.Toulouse are back with a vengeance
After losing in the semi-final last year, Toulouse look like they are back with a vengeance. Going to Bordeaux for your first game of the season is a very tough task and the home side looked very good. Two tries from new signing Madosh Tambwe looked like they were enough for the home side to take the win.
But Toulouse managed to scrap it out despite not their best performance. What will please Toulouse fans is the team got it done despite not firing on all cylinders. Romaine Ntamack looked at his best and Toulouse can certainly bring the physicality this season.
2.Stade Francais will be better this season
Last year was not great for Stade Francais, finishing just ssven points off the relegation playoff place. They made some good moves in the summer and it paid off with a week one win over Clermont who have had a much worse summer.
Morgan Parra was excellent in the win against his former club and Stade were pushed to victory thanks to tries from Australian centre Sefanaia Naivalu and new signing Giovanni Habel Kuffner.
Stade have quietly had a very good pre season and they did show some rustiness in the game. But when they got things going, Stade looked really good and this looks like it would be a much better season for Stade. They have made some good moves in the summer and it looks like they are paying off very early on.
3.Racing can win without the stars
If you are talking about talent, it is hard to look past Racing 92 as the most talented team in the Top 14 after they had a brilliant summer. Despite the brilliant summer, Racing went into their first game without a lot of stars, particularly in the backs.
Racing still managed to beat last years runners up Castres despite missing Warrick Gelant, Gael Fickou, Juan Imhoff, Regan Grace and Francis Saili. The backs have also been rocked with the sudden retirement of Virimi Vakatawa. It means that Racing were missing a lot of talent this weekend.
But they still managed to pull off a brilliant win over last years runners up Castres. The win featured a lot of good performances, as well as one of the highlights of the weekend when tighthead prop Cedate Gomes Sa beat three defenders like he was a back and scored a brilliant try.
After Castres took a slim lead, it was a brilliantly worked try from Olivier Klemenczak that secured the win. Racing did get some big performances from superstars like Finn Russell and new signing Cameron Woki. But the scary thing for the Top 14 is that Racing looked good and they have multiple world class players returning to the side.