The Rugby Paper are reporting that former Ulster fly-half Paddy Jackson had signed a three-year contract with Sale Sharks for next season before public outcry rose over the initial reports linking him to the club.
Jackson and former teammate Stuart Olding both had their contracts with Ulster Rugby revoked last month following an Ulster and IRFU internal review after both men were cleared of rape.
Jackson had reportedly signed the heads of terms on a three-year deal with the Greater Manchester Club. Sale released a statement last week claiming that there is no substance to the rumours linking the 26-year-old and Olding to the club.
Neil Fissler of The Rugby Paper is reporting that Jackson had agreed to terms with the club and that if Sale back out of a deal for the player they could be facing a substantial compensation bill.
Fissler also reports that both Jackson and Olding visited the club’s facilities last week while he believes that Olding has verbally agreed to a two-year deal with the club, however, that that report is so far unconfirmed.
Tomorrow’s front pages…
— TheRugbyPaper (@TheRugbyPaper) May 5, 2018
Sale denied they were signing Faf de Klerk, James O’Connor and Marland Yarde, who are they they playing for? Jackson and Odling apparently visited the training ground this week too.
— Neil Fissler (@neilfissler) May 2, 2018
The Sharks also moved to dispel reports linking South Africa scrum-half Faf de Klerk and former Wallaby James O’Connor with moves to the club last season before signing both players weeks and months later.
Sale Director of Rugby Steve Diamond said that he did not know the source of the links rumouring moves for de Klerk and O’Connor to the club last season.
Diamond said in a statement on the club’s website: “I have not spoken to either player and don’t know where the speculation has come from. We have announced several new signings recently and we are in negotiations with several more players.
“Once they sign a Sharks contract we will make announcements.”