Cardiff Blues coach Dai Young insists his team's Amlin Challenge Cup ambitions will benefit from failing to reach their domestic play-offs.
The Welsh region missed out on a place in the top four of the Magners League by a point on the last day of the regular season.
But Young admitted the week's rest will help his team better prepare for the final against Toulon in Marseille on May 23.
He said: "We're disappointed to miss out on the play-offs but the positive is that we have a week off ahead of the Amlin final and perhaps that was in the back of people's minds.
"There has been a lot of talk about the Amlin final and perhaps that overtook thoughts of the play-offs.
"But we now have extra time to do our homework on Toulon. Everyone knows the quality they have but we expect to produce a far better performance."
The Blues beat Munster 13-12 in Cardiff to extend their winning streak to seven games and are hopeful that Wales scrum-half Richie Rees, Tonga prop Taufa'ao Filise and wing Chris Czekaj will all be available for the final. However British Lions No8
Andy Powell and Wales wing Tom James are out injured.
Young said: "There has been a lot of talk about the game being in Toulon's back yard. But personally I would prefer the final to be played in front of a large and passionate crowd in France than a half-full neutral venue. given our away form this season, there is no reason why we shouldn't travel there in good spirits."
Finals Edition: Listen to the best guide to the European Rugby Cup Finals weekend in Dublin, which sees Leinster Rugby take on Stade Francais Paris at the RDS on Friday night in the Amlin Challenge Cup Final and then ASM Clermont Auvergne tackle Toulon in an all-French affair at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.