Dan Carter has agreed a deal to return to former club Racing 92 until the end of the Top 14 season, according to reports in France.
The 36-year-old could rejoin the club on a medical joker contract, RMC Sport reported on Friday.
The club is remaining tight-lipped about Carter’s reported impending arrival at their Plessis-Robinson training ground – and the sports news broadcaster’s claims on Friday run contrary to a statement it received from Racing president Jacky Lorenzetti 24 hours earlier. He told them: “It will not happen.”
But, a source at the club has told RMC that officials are merely waiting for a ‘discharge letter’ before confirming the move.
Any deal would be dependent on his temporary release from Japan’s Top League champions Kobelco Steelers. But, behind the scenes, Racing are said to be quietly confident the paperwork will be sorted quickly. It could mean Carter, who was named the Top League’s player of the season, may celebrate his 37th birthday on March 5 in Paris.
And, with Racing due to face French rivals Toulouse in the quarter-finals of the Champions Cup at La Defense Arena on March 31, he could yet fill the one hole in his medal collection – a European title.
He would return to the Steelers in time for the start of the new season in Japan.
Racing have been looking for cover at fly-half since Lambie was forced to call a premature end to his career in January due to the ongoing effects of concussion. He had not played for the French club since leaving the pitch early in the Champions Cup final against Leinster last May.
Carter’s was among the early names mentioned as a possible medical joker replacement. The others were Toulon’s Francois Trinh-Duc, who has since agreed to join Racing on a two-year deal from next season, and Clermont’s Patricio Fernandez – who has instead opted to move to Lyon.
Sign up to our mailing list here and we’ll keep you up to the minute with weekly updates from the world of rugby.