Munster captain Peter O’Mahony has turned down an IRFU contract and begun discussions with French and English clubs.
The Irish Times are today reporting that Munster captain Peter O’Mahony has turned down and IRFU offer and has begun discussions with French and English clubs.
The report claims that one French club in particular has doubled the offer tabled but the David Nucifora the IRFU Performance Director.
If proved correct, it would be another huge blow for Munster and certainly not an ideal situation for head coach Johann van Graan to be walking in to. Donnacha Ryan left last season and Simon Zebo is set to depart for Racing 92 at the end of the current campaign.
Both Ryan and Zebo are big losses to Munster but the potential loss of their current captain who has been playing some fine rugby this season would represent a huge blow both in terms of ability and experience.
Any move away from Munster would also raise serious questions of the IRFU’s policy surrounding contracts and negotiations. With the French clubs seemingly having endless financial resources, the IRFU need to make a stand.
The lure of Irish caps and a World Cup might keep the majority of players on Irish shores. However, International caps and World Cup appearances do not give players the type of financial security that a 2-3 year deal playing with a top paying French club can deliver.
During the interview with Gavin Comiskey, O’Mahony intimated that Munster is his preferred option:
“Ideally I would like to [stay]. I like it around here, but they’ve got to come to the table as well. I want to play for Munster and Ireland, but it’s got to be fair as well.”
Munster and the IRFU’s most pressing bit of work should now be focusing on doing whatever they possibly can to retaining the 28-year old whose loss would not only be a blow to his province but would also put a dent in Joe Schmidt’s World Cup plans.
You can read the article in full by clicking here.