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26th Nov 2018

Paddy Jackson linked with a move away from Perpignan

Jack O'Toole

Former Ulster fly-half Paddy Jackson could be on the move again next season with his club side Perpignan currently languishing at the bottom of the Top 14.

The Pyrénées-Orientales club have not won a single game this season and currently sit nine points adrift of 13th placed Agen.

Jackson signed for the seven-time champions in June after Ulster and the IRFU agreed to revoke his contract following his acquittal of all charges from a Belfast rape trial.

According to Midi Olympique, a French bi-weekly newspaper specialising in rugby, Jackson has become a top priority for Lyon who will be looking to replace France international Lionel Beauxis following his defection to Oyonnax next season.

Midi claim that Jackson has an exit clause in his contract, in case of relegation of Perpignan to Pro D2, that would permit the fly-half to leave the club.

There’s also said to be a clause where other clubs could buy out the final year of Jackson’s two-year agreement.

Meanwhile IRFU Performance Director David Nucifora left the door open for a return to international rugby for Jackson and former Ulster teammate, and co-defendant Stuart Olding, should they come back to Ireland to continue their club careers in the future.

“It’s not one for me to say but I don’t think we can make a comment on that,” Nucifora said back in June. “But I don’t think anything is ever forever, who knows what could happen or what will happen?

“For the immediate future, there’s no thought that they will be considered. They are playing overseas so at the moment if you’re playing overseas, you’re not considered.

“The players now have found new contracts so that’s a positive for them personally, individually, and everyone just has to move on from that. It was a tough year in regards to that for the players, for Ulster and for rugby in general.

“Hopefully, we don’t go through that ever again.”

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