Former All Blacks wing Julian Savea has come to the final weekend of his first season at Toulon under eccentric owner Mourad Boudjellal, and is ready to move upward and onward at the French club.


The 27-year-old reached out to his Twitter ahead of the last game of the season, proclaiming that next year Toulon fans will hopefully see the team in the finals. Savea responded to a fan confirming we will stay, saying that ‘leaving was never an option for me’ after becoming embroiled in public criticism by club owner and coach alike during the season.

Boudjellal’s rants over Savea included asking for a DNA test before stating the winger was no longer at the club. RCT president Patrice Collazo mirrored the owner’s sentiment in publicly stating he had nine games left to prove his worth, pressuring Savea with an ultimatum.

Toulon’s owner has since admitted recently that he may have been “too harsh” with his commentary on All Black star signing Julian Savea during this season, with the size of Savea’s deal leaving Boudjellal unhappy with the performances in return.

“At one point, it was him or me! Quit paying someone as much … especially at that rate,” he told Mid Olympique.


Toulon will finish in their worst ever position since being promoted into the Top 14 and will miss out on Champions Cup action next year after failing to get out of the pool stages for the first time. Boudjellal is motivated to turn the club around, splashing out on more marquee recruitments like Eben Etzebeth, Nehe Milner-Skudder and Baptiste Serin for next year.

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