Gael Fickou is the latest transfer speculation surrounding Racing 92, reports in France claiming he could leave Parisian rivals Stade Francais where he is playing his third season after joining them in 2018 from Toulouse where he spent six seasons.
The future of Fickou isn’t the only rumour speculated on by Midi Olympique, the bi-weekly French rugby newspaper. With Teddy Thomas’ departure still described as probable, there is also an update on exiled Ireland international Simon Zebo, the popular RugbyPass Offload co-host.
With Racing conscious of the salary cap, it is said they could also farewell Zebo who has been with them since 2018. Last capped by Ireland on their June 2017 tour to Japan, the soon-to-be 31-year-old Zebo reportedly has a desire to return to Munster in the hope of working his way into Andy Farrell’s selection plans for Ireland at the 2023 World Cup.
Stade Francais wound up in salary cap trouble last year and a €300,000 fine has seen them go all out this term to ensure everything is in proper order, something that isn’t easy given the eye-watering salaries that exist in the French game.
For example, Fickou is reportedly on one of the biggest wages at Stade Francais, something illustrated by how the Parisians had to pay €700,000 to buy the player out of the last year of his contract at Toulouse.
Il va y avoir du sport en Une de Midi Olympique !
— Midi Olympique (@midi_olympique) March 4, 2021
Despite now having a few years yet to go on his existing Stade deal, their desire to better balance the books has left the club appointing an intermediary to help find Fickou a new club who won’t have to pay any buyout on the remaining years of the France player’s contract.
This has opened the door to a potential Fickou move to Racing and Midi report he would be interested in a cross-city switch where he would link up with Test level midfield partner Virimi Vakatawa.
Declan Kidney inherited a mess nearly three years ago to the very day at London Irish but he is now the 4th longest serving Premiership club boss, evidence that he must be doing well #PremRugbyhttps://t.co/8OMwF32SH5
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) March 5, 2021
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