|Full name||Union Sportive Villeneuve XIII — Léopards d'Aquitaine|
|CEO(s)||Michel Thiolat, Jean-Pierre Sagnettes|
|Coach(s)||David Despin, Antoine Lopes|
|Competition||Elite One Championship|
Villeneuve Leopards, translated from Léopards d'Aquitaine and sometimes known as Union Sportive Villeneuve, are a French rugby league club from the town of Villeneuve-sur-Lot in the département of Lot-et-Garonne. They play in the Elite One Championship.
- 1 History
- 2 2013/14 Squad
- 3 2013/14 transfers
- 4 Honours
- 5 International Players
- 6 Coaches
- 7 Presidents
- 8 Famous players, coaches, presidents
- 9 References
- 10 External links
Sport Athlétique Villeneuvois.13 (SAV.13) was founded during the last two weeks of May 1934. The majority of the Villeneuve rugby union team and members (CAV.15, led by French rugby union international Jean Galia switched to rugby league.
SAV.13 were the first to club to become a member of the Ligue Française de Rugby à 13 (LFR.13) on June 2, 1934. Villeneuve remain as the oldest rugby league club in France. SAV.13 became the first French side to tour England in September 1934.
Due to the banning of rugby league by the Vichy regime in 1940 SAV.13 switched to rugby union and were renamed Union Sportive Villeneuve.15 (USV.15). Towards the end of the Second World War the LFR.13 was re-established and rugby league returned to Villeneuve under the name USV.13.
Villeneuve became national champions again in 1959, 1964 and twice more in the early 1980s. They also lifted the Lord Derby Cup in 1958, 1964, 1979 and 1984. In 1998, USV.13 added the nickname "Les léopards d'Aquitaine".
Villeneuve experienced a glorious era from 1996 to 2003, appearing in every Grand Final except one. They won five championships in eight years culminating in their 31-18 victory over St.Gaudens in 2003. Villeneuve played in four Lord Derby Cup finals in this period and won every one. During this period they also became the first French club to reach the quarter-finals of the prestigious Rugby League Challenge Cup on 11 March 2001.
In 2005, USV.13 went bankrupt and a new club was formed named Villeneuve.13 Rugby League (V.13-RL). The Léopards made history in 2005 when they signed the Russian international halfback, Ouchillikos Novel. He was signed after an impressive performance in the defeat to France in the 2005 European Nations Cup.
* As of 1 December 2013:
|2013/14 Villeneuve Squad|
|First team squad||Coaching staff|
Updated: 1 December 2013
|Player||Signed from||Contract Length||Date|
|Jack Spencer||Barrow Raiders||September 2013|
|Player||Signed for||Contract Length||Date|
Champion of France
- Max Rousié Trophy (Champions) : 1935, 1959, 1964, 1980, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003.
- Vice-champion (Runners-Up : 1938, 1939, 1962, 1965, 1974, 1983, 1984, 1991, 1997, 1998.
- Junior (1st class) trophy, : 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1946, 1960, 1980, 1989, 1990 and junior (top 1st class i.e. espoir) trophy: 1999, 2000, 2001.
Cup of France
- Trophy Lord Derby, (Winners : 1937, 1958, 1964, 1979, 1984, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003.
- Finalist : 1936, 1938, 1953, 1966, 1969, 1970, 1972.
- Junior (1st class) trophy Rosemblat after L. Nitard, holder : 1960, 1961, 1977, 1978, 1989, 1990.
European Club Cup
Holder : 1996 (Trophy Jack Wilson), 1998, 1999.
French or assimilated
- V XIII RL
- USV.13 :
- Mark Bourneville (New Zealand)
- Paul Sironen (Australia)
- Shaun Austerfield (England)
- Grant Doorey (Australia)
- Dragan Durdevic (Australia);
- Jason Webber (Australia);
- Brock Mueller (Australia);
- Chad Dillinger (Australia);
- Quentin Pongia (New Zealand);
- Artie Shead (New Zealand);
- Phillip Shead (New Zealand);
- Tim Ryan (Australia);
Maurice Brunetaud and Henri Durand are members of the very small group of French rugby players who were Internationals before and after WWII and Rugby League's banishment by Vichy (Oct. 1940 to Sept.1944).
Famous players, coaches, presidents