USA Perpignan

Full name Union sportive arlequins Perpignan-Roussillon
Founded 1902 (1902)
Location Perpignan, France
Ground(s) Stade Aimé Giral (Capacity: 14,593)
President François Rivière
Coach(es) Alain Hyardet
Grégory Patat
François Gelez
Captain(s) Guillaume Vilaceca
League(s) Rugby Pro D2
2015–16 7th
1st kit
2nd kit
3rd kit
Official website

Union Sportive des Arlequins Perpignanais (Catalan: Unió Esportiva Arlequins de Perpinyà), generally referred to as USA Perpignan, is a French rugby union club that plays in the city of Perpignan in Pyrénées-Orientales. The club currently competes in the Rugby Pro D2, the second level of the French league system.

The club was founded in 1902 as AS Perpignan, renamed US Perpignan in 1919 and adopted its present name in 1933. Perpignan plays at Stade Aimé Giral (capacity 14 593). The club wears red and gold (Sang et Or = Blood and Gold) colours derived from the Catalan Senyera.


The club was established in 1902 as AS Perpignan. It would be in 1914 that the club would go on to make its first ever final appearance. On 3 May, Perpignan defeated Stadoceste Tarbais 8–7 at Stade des Ponts Jumeaux in Toulouse in front of 15,000 people. Several of these champions were killed some months later in World War I and, to honour their sacrifice, it was decided to colour USAP jersey like a Poilu uniform.

Four years after the championship in 1914, the club was renamed as US Perpignan. Under the new club name, US Perpignan made it to the final of the French championship three seasons after the change. On 17 April 1921, Perpignan defeated Stade Toulousain 5–0 at Parc des Sports de Sauclières in Béziers and thus claiming their second championship. Three seasons later, the finalists of 1921 would meet again in the final of 1924, though this time Toulouse won the game 3–0 in Bordeaux.

The success continued throughout the 1920s, and following the final defeat of the 1924 season, US Perpignan were able to make it to the final of the 1925 season. They faced US Carcassonne in Narbonne, and defeated them 5–0 to win the 1925 Championship. For the third season in a row, US Perpignan made it to the final. The opponents were Stade Toulousain once again, the two sides had each defeated each other once in a final in recent years. Toulouse won 11–0 in Bordeaux. After their prominence in the mid-1920s, Perpignan's final appearance in 1926 was their last for nearly a decade.

Perpignan fans at a home game

Perpignan's next final appearance came in 1935 against Biarritz at Stade des Ponts Jumeaux in Toulouse on the 12th of May, with Biarritz winning 3–0. That season they also won the Challenge Yves du Manoir. Three seasons later Perpignan were again involved in the Championship final against Biarritz. The final was played on 8 May, and this time, Perpignan defeated Biarritz, winning 11–6 to claim their first Championship since 1921. They were also runners-up of the Challenge Yves-du-Manoir that same season as well.

The success continued throughout the late 1930s, with Perpignan again being runners-up of the Challenge Yves du Manoir in 1936. It was also the 1936 season that Biarritz and Perpignan would face off in the Championship. Both of Perpignan's last two final appearances were against Biarritz, and both Perpignan and Biarritz had won one each against each other. The final took place on 30 April, and Biarritz turned out to be victorious, defeating Perpignan 6–0. Two years later, Perpignan were in the final of the Challenge Yves du Manoir, but became runners-up.

Their next final appearance would not be until the season of 1944. Perpignan played Aviron Bayonnais at Parc des Princes in Paris on 26 March to decide who would be the champions of France. Perpignan won, defeating Aviron Bayonnais 20–5, claiming their first Championship since 1938.

Perpignan would have to wait another eight years until they would make it to the final again. In the 1952 season, Perpignan met FC Lourdes in the final at Stadium Municipal in Toulouse, where they went down to FC Lourdes 20–11. However, both sides would meet in another final three years later to decide the 1955 Championship. This time Perpignan emerged victorious, defeating FC Lourdes 11–6 in Bordeaux. Perpignan also won the Challenge Yves du Manoir during the 1955 season, and were runners-us the following year as well.

USA Perpignan during a Heineken Cup match

Perpignan won the Challenge Yves du Manoir in 1965, but made their first final appearance 20 years after 1955, to decide the 1977 season Championship. They met AS Béziers in the final, who defeated Perpignan 12–4 at Parc des Princes. Perpignan won the Challenge Yves du Manoir in 1994, but they would next appear in the final in 1998, where they went down to Stade Français 34–7 in Paris in front of 78,000 people.

In 2002, the club entered into a partnership with the University of Barcelona Rugby Union Club, hence renaming them USAP Barcelona, which compete in the División de Honor, the national Championship in Spain. Perpignan made it to the 2004 final, where they met Stade Français, who defeated them in the 1998 final. Stade Français won again, 38–20 at Stade de France in front of 79,722 people.

In European competition, USAP reached the final stage in 2003 (losing 21–17 to Toulouse in Dublin Lansdowne Road) after losing a 1999 semi-final in Toulouse Stadium against Colomiers. They were beaten in the quarter-finals in Lansdowne Road again in 2006 by eventual winners Munster.

They signed All Blacks fly-half Dan Carter, widely regarded as one of the world's best players, on a six-month deal starting from December 2008.[1] Carter's stint at Perpignan, however, ended prematurely when he tore an Achilles tendon.

Their season ended by progressing into the Top 14 semi-final with a 25–21 win over Stade Français and eventually winning it with a fantastic 22–13 win over ASM Clermont Auvergne in the final. In 2010, they advanced to the final again against Clermont, but they saw Les Jaunards end decades of frustration by winning their first championship final in 11 tries.

In 2011 they signed a twinning agreement with FC Barcelona of Spain, which proposes USAP to be promoted through FC Barcelona.

Club honours

Finals results

French championship

Date Winner Runner-up Score Venue Attendance
3 May 1914 AS Perpignan Stadoceste Tarbais 8–7 Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 15,000
17 April 1921 US Perpignan Stade Toulousain 5–0 Parc des Sports de Sauclières, Béziers 20,000
27 April 1924 Stade Toulousain US Perpignan 3–0 Parc Lescure, Bordeaux 20,000
3 May 1925 US Perpignan AS Carcassonne 5–0  Maraussan, Narbonne 20,000
2 May 1926 Stade Toulousain US Perpignan 11–0 Parc Lescure, Bordeaux 25.000
12 May 1935 Biarritz Olympique USA Perpignan 3–0 Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 23,000
8 May 1938 USA Perpignan Biarritz Olympique 11–6 Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 24,600
30 April 1939 Biarritz Olympique USA Perpignan 6–0 AP Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 23,000
26 March 1944 USA Perpignan Aviron Bayonnais 20–5 Parc des Princes, Paris 35,000
4 May 1952 FC Lourdes USA Perpignan 20–11 Stadium Municipal, Toulouse 32,500
22 May 1955 USA Perpignan FC Lourdes 11–6 Parc Lescure, Bordeaux 39,764
29 May 1977 AS Béziers USA Perpignan 12–4 Parc des Princes, Paris 41,821
16 May 1998 Stade Français USA Perpignan 34–7 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 78,000
26 June 2004 Stade Français USA Perpignan 38–20 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 79,722
6 June 2009 USA Perpignan ASM Clermont Auvergne 22–13 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 79,205
29 May 2010 Clermont Auvergne USA Perpignan 19–6 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 79,262

Heineken Cup

Date Winner Runner-up Score Venue Attendance
24 May 2003 Stade Toulousain USA Perpignan 22–17 Lansdowne Road, Dublin 28,600

Current standings

2016–17 Rugby Pro D2 Table
Club Played Won Drawn Lost Points For Points Against Points Diff Try Bonus Losing Bonus Points
1 Montauban 14 10 0 4 343 221 +122 2 1 43
2 Oyonnax 14 8 0 6 375 284 +91 4 5 41
3 Agen 14 9 1 4 377 320 +57 2 1 41
4 Aurillac 14 9 0 5 333 306 +27 3 2 41
5 Colomiers 14 9 0 5 346 271 +75 2 1 39
6 Soyaux Angoulême 14 8 1 5 282 253 +29 1 1 36
7 Mont-de-Marsan 14 7 0 7 300 290 +10 1 6 35
8 Biarritz 14 7 0 7 330 317 +13 1 3 32
9 Carcassonne 14 7 1 6 300 287 +13 2 0 32
10 Narbonne 14 7 0 7 282 363 –81 1 0 29
11 Vannes 14 5 2 7 287 337 –50 1 3 28
12 Perpignan 14 5 1 8 304 312 –8 3 3 28
13 Albi 14 6 1 7 292 355 –63 0 1 27
14 Dax 14 5 0 9 302 390 –88 1 4 25
15 Béziers 14 4 0 10 277 306 –29 3 3 22
16 Bourgoin 14 2 1 11 242 360 –118 1 3 14
Green background (row 1) Champions automatically promoted to Top 14.
Blue background denotes teams that qualify for the promotion play-offs.
Red background relegation to Fédérale 1.

Note: When two teams have the same points total, position is determined by head-to-head results before points difference.

Current squad

2016-17 Note: Flags indicate national union as has been defined under WR eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-WR nationality.

Player Position Union
Raphaël Carbou Hooker France France
Jean-Philippe Genevois Hooker France France
Alex Brown Prop England England
Jean-Baptiste Custoja Prop France France
Enzo Forletta Prop France France
Tevita Mailau Prop Tonga Tonga
Gert Muller Prop South Africa South Africa
Oliver Tomaszczyk Prop England England
Bastien Chalureau Lock France France
Loïc Charlon Lock France France
Romain Millo-Chluski Lock France France
Guillaume Vilaceca Lock France France
Christophe André Flanker France France
Lucas Bachelier Flanker France France
Karl Chateau Flanker France France
Genesis Pelepele Lemalu Flanker New Zealand New Zealand
Alasdair Strokosch Flanker Scotland Scotland
Yohan Vivalda Flanker France France
Alan Brazo Number 8 France France
Player Position Union
Sébastien Descons Scrum-half France France
Tom Ecochard Scrum-half France France
Mathieu Bélie Fly-half France France
Romuald Seguy Fly-half France France
Enzo Selponi Fly-half France France
Lifeimi Mafi Centre New Zealand New Zealand
Sione Piukala Centre Tonga Tonga
Apimeleki Nawaqatabu Centre Fiji Fiji
Jens Torfs Centre Belgium Belgium
Yohann Artru Wing France France
Jonathan Bousquet Wing France France
Samuel Faconnier Wing France France
Timoci Matanavou Wing Fiji Fiji
Jean-Bernard Pujol Wing France France
Mathieu Acebes Fullback France France
Julien Farnoux Fullback France France

Notable former players

See also


  1. Pryor, Matthew (28 June 2008). "Dan Carter joins Perpignan". The Times. Retrieved 28 June 2008.
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