European Rugby Champions Cup & Challenge Cup 2018 finals to be held in Spain

San Mames
The San Mames Stadium was redeveloped in 2013 and has a capacity of 53,289

The Spanish city of Bilbao has been chosen to host next season's European Champions Cup and Challenge Cup finals.

It is the first time the games will be staged outside traditional rugby union countries, with Spain's national team 18th in the world rankings.

The finals will be played at the San Mames Stadium, home of La Liga football side Athletic Bilbao.

Newcastle United's St James' Park ground will host both European finals in the 2018-19 campaign.

Both cities will also stage the final of the European Continental Shield, a feeder competition for the Challenge Cup aimed at clubs from the likes of Russia, Spain, Germany and Belgium.

"Bilbao is an excellent destination which breaks new ground for our tournaments and we see this as a big step in the expansion of our sport across the continent," said European Professional Club Rugby chairman Simon Halliday.

Bilbao is the largest city in the Basque Country, which covers part of south west France and includes Biarritz, who play in the second tier of French rugby.

This year's Challenge Cup and Champions Cup finals take place at Murrayfield in Scotland on 12 and 13 May.

  • Get all the latest rugby union news by adding alerts in the BBC Sport app.

Top Stories