Sexton signs two-year deal with Metro
Jonny Sexton yesterday completed his long-mooted deal to join Racing Metro 92 after signing a two-year contract, with the option of a third year, from next season onwards.
The IRFU had publicly announced their decision to withdraw from negotiations with Sexton’s representatives, Platinum One, on January 25th, on foot of the 27-year-old three-time Heineken Cup winner rejecting an offer believed to be worth a basic €400,000 a year with add-ons, such as being an ambassador for O2, and bonuses.
Having been on less lucrative provincial contracts (up to €90,000) until the last two seasons, the 36-times capped Sexton is believed to have wanted parity with Ireland’s highest earner Jamie Heaslip (who is reckoned to be on €450,000 per year).
Briefly in contractual limbo when the IRFU made their announcement, the following day Sexton is understood to have signed a pre-contract with the Parisian club and yesterday penned a two-year contract, according to French sources by fax, which France’s leading sports’ newspaper L’Equipe claims is worth €600,000 per annum rather the €750,000 per annum which had been widely reported at the end of January.
In an irony that will assuredly not be lost on Leinster, the provinces are not allowed contribute to international contracts, but even allowing for the presence of Ian Madigan they will now have to purchase another outhalf when they could have used the same monies to supplement Sexton’s deal and thus probably keep their first-choice out-half.
Given the player’s loyalties to his home province, his departure could have been avoided.
This compounds the feeling that while the Racing move may be temporarily beneficial for the player financially, it will assuredly place greater demands on his body as he will surely face a busy programme in Paris..