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Amitage brothers set for change

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A summer of big change is ahead for the Armitage brothers in France

Former England international Steffon Armitage could be ready to drop into Pro D2 to extend his career in France. However, older brother Delon is set to hang up his boots at the end of Lyon’s current Top 14 campaign, 

Top flight strugglers Perpignan are set to be relegated following just a single season back among the French elite. Despite that impending demotion, they are already making plans to ensure they will be in a position to bounce straight back up. 

After sorting out their coaching staff for next term, next up on the list of club president Francois Riviere is strengthening his team’s pack and according to French rugby newspaper Midi Olympique, two names are prominent in the administrator’s thoughts: Clermont’s Damien Chouly and Pau’s Armitage, who are both at the end of their contracts with their respective clubs.

Chouly knows Perpignan well as he spent five seasons with the Catalans and was a league winner in 2009. He is no longer a first-choice pick at Clermont and a two-year offer could tempt the soon-to-be 34-year-old.   

Armitage, though, is keen on locking down a contract outside of Pau after three years at that club. The back row claimed last month in an interview that isn’t ready to call it quits yet.

“I want to continue. I am certainly 33 years old but I have come out of six months of rest. I rejuvenated. Physically, I feel ready to go on for at least two years.”

Midi report a series of clubs have been linked with back row Armitage. Bordeaux-Bègles and their incoming boss Christophe Urios enquired about him, Aix-en-Provence dreamed of associating Steffon with his brother Delon (who will instead retire and take care of Lyon’s academy), while Montpellier and Stade Francais didn’t follow up their initial interest. That leaves the field potentially clear for Perpignan to take advantage. 

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A summer of big change is ahead for the Armitage brothers in France