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'I like their kit, like where they play, like the place they are from... I might be a good fit': Danny Care names the MLR team he would love to play for

By Liam Heagney

Trending on RugbyPass

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Life doesn’t stand still for long in rugby. This time last week, Danny Care emerged as a hotly-tipped left-field selection for the 2021 Lions tour and this week he has been chewing the fat with ex-England colleague Ben Foden about whether he might some time join the former Northampton full-back and ex-Harlequins teammate Chris Robshaw in America’s Major League Rugby. 

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With Ben Youngs publicly revealing he was unavailable to tour South Africa with the Lions, it resulted in huge momentum being generated last week in England about the Lions credentials of Care and whether an excellent renaissance with Harlequins could get the half-back into Warren Gatland’s Lions selection despite being last capped by Eddie Jones in November 2018.

His name appeared in numerous unofficial eve-of-squad-announcement selections but when it came to Lions chairman Jason Leonard announcing the names of the 37-strong squad last Thursday the name of Care was nowhere to be seen.

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The crazy reaction on the RugbyPass Fanzone to the 2021 Lions squad announcement

The 34-year-old soon got back to work, though, with Harlequins, helping the London club he joined in 2006 to the weekend Gallagher Premiership win over Wasps that consolidated their push for an end-of-season playoff place. That title challenge has been enormously helped by Care’s rejuvenated form in the wake of his early 2021 show of loyalty – within days of Paul Gustard’s departure last January as director of rugby, Harlequins announced a contract extension for Care whose last appearance for a club other than the Londoners was 15 years ago with Leeds.

However, on a guest appearance with Foden on The Rugby Clubhouse, which is part of The Rugby Network’s growing coverage of rugby in America, Care hinted he might be interested in giving the MLR a shot before he eventually retires, quipping that he can’t fare as badly as his old pal Robshaw has done this year at San Diego Legion. 

“I’d hopefully have a bit more success than Robbo,” he chuckled when quizzed by Foden about whether he might ever be tempted to come to America. “Is it one game, one tackle and one dislocated shoulder? Surely it couldn’t be much worse than that. We look at it [MLR] over here and it’s something that I have never really thought about.

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“I have never really thought about playing abroad until I saw the LA Giltinis team and I was like hang on, I like their kit, I like where they play, I like the place that they are from and I might be a good fit. Or if it’s not the Giltinis, it’s definitely something I would have a look at. 

“From speaking to you, hearing from you, you see Matt Giteau, Adam Ashley-Cooper over there at the moment, it looks awesome, it looks fun rugby. I love the commentators – the commentators are brilliant, the English could take a leaf out of their book. So yeah, definitely, you never know. I have got one more year at Harlequins signed up. I’m enjoying my rugby, I feel fit, I feel fresh, I feel like I have got a few more years left in the tank.”

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'I like their kit, like where they play, like the place they are from... I might be a good fit': Danny Care names the MLR team he would love to play for

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