Former All Blacks playmaker Lima Sopoaga will leave Premiership club Wasps to join Top 14 outfit Lyon at the end of the season, the English side announced on Tuesday.
According to RMC Sport, the 30-year-old playmaker has signed a two-year deal with Lyon.
The deal comes after heavy speculation regarding Sopoaga’s future after he has been confined to just 52 appearances for the Coventry-based club since 2018.
Arriving at the Ricoh Arena following eight seasons with the Highlanders, where he won a Super Rugby title in 2015, the 17-test All Black was signed by Wasps as a like-for-like replacement for star playmaker Danny Cipriani, who left for Gloucester.
The marquee signing has since fallen down the club’s pecking order, however, as the likes of young English pivot Jacob Umaga and current academy player Charlie Atkinson have instead been preferred in recent times.
During his time at Wasps, Sopoaga has also featured prominently at fullback, a position he hadn’t played prior to moving to England, although he hasn’t featured in the club’s nine most recent matches.
Nevertheless, both Sopoaga and Wasps head coach Lee Blackett were graceful in their farewells in a statement posted on the club’s website.
“It has been an absolute pleasure to play for Wasps over the last three seasons,” Sopoaga said.
“I have made some great friends during my time at the club, and I will give my all for the rest of the season.”
Blackett added: “I would like to thank Lima for all his effort during his time at the club.
“We wish Lima, his children Milla, Isla and Salote, and his partner Miriam all the best for their future in France.”
Sopoaga heads to the Stade de Gerland to replace the retiring French playmaker Jonathan Wisniewski.
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