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Reports: Moroni set to replace Manu Tuilagi at Tigers

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Manu Tuilagi (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

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Leicester want to swap a Jaguar for a Tiger in a bid to fill the midfield void left by Manu Tuilagi. According to America Rugby News, ESPN Scrum and The Rugby Paper, Matías Moroni is being lined up to replace the blockbusting centre.


Tuilagi signed for Sale Sharks last week after failing to agree a new contract at Welford Road. It was a sea-change signing in the Premiership, bringing to an end a two-decade long association between the Tigers and the Tuilagi family.

Yet, two weeks after Tuilagi failed to agree terms and it seems the Tigers have found their replacement in Moroni. The 29-year-old outside centre specialist went to the Rugby World Cup and has won 43 caps for the Pumas.

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Moroni is the latest in an increasingly long line of Jaguares players departing the Super Rugby club, whose future appears to be very much up in the air. Guido Petti, Marcos Kremer and Jeronimo De La Fuente have all picked up contracts in France.

Moroni would be the latest Argentinian to make a home in the Midlands, where Tomas Lavanini currently players and where loosehead Macros Ayerza became a fan favourite.

Should Tigers sign Moroni, it would put to bed rumours linking Welsh international Jamie Roberts to the club. The Lions midfielder held talks with the ambitious Dragons, opening the way for a new centre partnership with Nick Tomkins, who is on-loan at the Welsh region from Saracens.

Tomkins, who made his Wales debut earlier this year under new boss Wayne Pivac, was being lined up to join Australian Joe Tomane in midfield but the deal to bring the released Leinster back to Newport has now stalled.


That has resulted in Roberts, whose most recent rugby was earlier this year in the colours of the Stormers in South Africa, negotiating with the Dragons about a return to regional rugby in Wales.

Yet reports in France suggested Roberts being sounded out for a role Tigers, which might have thrown a spanner in the works of the Dragons deal. Should the Moroni deal go ahead, it would almost certainly put a kibosh on that speculation.


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