7 Jun, 15:39
ERC can confirm that the Federation Française de Rugby (FFR) has withdrawn its application to host the 2014 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup finals, due to the ongoing uncertainty regarding the availability of the Stade de France.
"There is a feeling that as a club we can be brilliant on our day, yet we still suffer from inconsistency," he said. "We are trying to build on last season and be difficult to beat in all competitions and we are on the right track to do that.
"Getting our World Cup players back was a big boost to everyone and we were able to put 12 internationals into our starting line-up.
"It was frustrating not getting the bonus point, but I came away with a lot more respect for Perpignan for the way in which they played in that final quarter. They are the hardest team we will face in our Pool."
Captain Lawrence Dallaglio and Josh Lewsey will not make the trip to Calvisano for Saturday's contest - "we are giving them a week off," said Gatland.
But Dallaglio is confident they are ready for all the challenges ahead.
"We are better prepared now than we have ever been for the Heineken Cup with the extra strength in depth in our squad," he said. "We've been to two quarter-finals before, losing at home to Brive and away to Northampton, and this win over Perpignan was a real step in the right direction for us.
"We've always wanted to do well in the Heineken Cup. Last season was the first time we had been out of it and we went on to win the Parker Pen Challenge Cup.
"That gave us the chance to travel to France, where we won in Bordeaux and at Stade Francais, and the games from the quarter-final stages on in that tournament were probably as tough as in the Heineken Cup."