Edinburgh’s Heineken Champions Cup fixtures for the upcoming campaign have been confirmed.
The capital club will play Montpellier, Toulon and Newcastle Falcons in their first appearance in the tournament since the 2013/14 season.
Richard Cockerill’s side start with a tricky test in October, away to last season’s Top 14 runners-up Montpellier, before hosting fellow French side and Cockerill’s former team Toulon at BT Murrayfield the following week.
Newcastle Falcons are the opponents in a December double header, with the first tie taking place at Murrayfield on December 7 and the return leg at Kingston Park scheduled for nine days later on December 16.
In the new year, Edinburgh travel to the Stade Mayol for the return match against Toulon, with the final game a home fixture against Montpellier.
Vern Cotter will return to BT Murrayfield for the first time since he left his post as Scotland national team head coach.
Similarly, Edinburgh wing Duhan van der Merwe will make his first appearance at the Altrad Stadium since swapping Montpellier for the Scottish capital.
Les Cistes will provide a stern test for Edinburgh, and can call on French international back row Louis Picamoles; South African caps Ruan Pienaar, who has scored 135 points in 88 appearances for the Springboks, Francois Steyn, Jannie du Plessis and brother Bismarck plus former New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden.
Scotland cap Chris Harris will face a few of his international team mates when Cockerill’s side take on Newcastle Falcons, while Juan Pablo Socino could have some tactical tips for his new team mates after spending four years with the Aviva Premiership side prior to his move north.
As with Montpellier, there are several well-kent faces in the Toulon squad, including Francois Trinh-Duc, Guilhem Guirado and team captain Mathieu Bastareaud, while Rhys Webb - capped 31 times by Wales - is a recent addition to the Top 14 team’s squad.
Fixture in full
Montpellier v Edinburgh - Saturday 13 October (kick-off 4.15pm)
Edinburgh v Toulon - Saturday 20 October (kick-off 3.15pm)
Edinburgh v Newcastle Falcons - Friday 7 December (kick-off 7.45pm)
Newcastle Falcons v Edinburgh - Sunday 16 December (kick-off 3.15pm)
Toulon v Edinburgh - Saturday 12 January (kick-off 6.30pm)
Edinburgh v Montpellier - Friday 18 January (kick-off 7.45pm)