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Leinster make offer for Rabah Slimani to replace Ala’alatoa – report

By Liam Heagney
Clermont's Rabah Slimani (Photo by John Berry/Getty Images)

Former France international Rabah Slimani has reportedly been offered the opportunity to join Leinster as a replacement for Michael Ala’alatoa, who is heading to France to join Slimani’s current club Clermont for the 2024/25 season.

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The 34-year-old tighthead’s 57-cap Test career ended following the 2019 Rugby World Cup, so there would be no international distraction to factor in if he does take up the opportunity to swap the Top 14 for the URC and an adventure at Leinster, who already have RG Snyman and Jordie Barrett signed for next season.

Slimani has been on the go in the French top flight since making a 2008 breakthrough with Stade Francais, and it was 2017 when he moved south from Paris to Clermont.

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A rugbyrama.fr report read: “Will Rabah Slimani and Michael Ala’alatoa cross paths at Clermont-Ferrand airport? According to our information, Leinster are very interested in the profile of the Clermont tighthead and have already made an offer.

“At the end of his contract with ASM, Rabah Slimani will leave Auvergne this summer, as we revealed on May 30.

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“While several French teams had come to the former Parisian (34 years old; 57 caps), Leinster are now favourites to welcome Rabah Slimani to their squad. A surprising destination but rather logical given the Irish squad next season.

“Faced with the departure of Michael Ala’alatoa, who will go the other way, Leinster had already sounded out several well-known tightheads, such as Australian Taniela Tupou (28 years old; 51 caps) in particular.

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“The Irish province must also cover for Tadhg Furlong (31 years old; 71 caps), an undisputed starter in the position since 2016.

“If he signs for Leinster, Slimani would become the first Frenchman to play for the men in blue.”

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Turlough 26 minutes ago
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