Stuart Lancaster thinks Joey Carbery should stay at Leinster

Meanwhile, Rhys Ruddock and Fergus McFadden are unavailable for Champions Cup final

Leinster coach Stuart Lancaster believes Joey Carbery should remain with the province. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Leinster coach Stuart Lancaster believes Joey Carbery should remain with the province. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

 

There was mixed injury news coming out of Leinster for their European Champions Cup final against Racing ‘92 on Saturday.

Rhys Ruddock and Fergus McFadden are unavailable for the trip to Spain but scrumhalf Luke McGrath and backrow Jordi Murphy are expected to train fully this week.

It comes to the backdrop of the continued focus on Joey Carbery and his suggested move to Ulster in order to help the struggling province and ensure more game time for Carbery in the pivot position.

Carbery has had very limited exposure to outhalf at Leinster with most of his game time played at fullback.

Stuart Lancaster, who has received consistent praise from players for his input into Leinster this season, especially in the area of broken play, believes Carbery should stay.

“It’s difficult, these things inevitably come up towards the end of the season which is when the competitions are,” said the former England head coach.

“I come back to the point that I made. Whenever I was in this position or involved with a player who had a decision to make I always tried to say ‘right, what’s the best thing for the player. Not what’s right for this party or that party, what’s right for the player’.

“As a consequence, I think Joey has developed brilliantly at Leinster and I think this is where he should stay.”

Lancaster added that he was optimistic Luke McGrath would be fit for selection. The scrumhalf has struggled with an ankle injury and his absence has forced James Lowe out of the match day squads because the competition limits teams to three overseas players only.

“Yeah, we’re pretty optimistic now,” said Lancaster. “We trained mid-week last week and he trained on the Tuesday and the Wednesday and there’s been no reaction to that.

“We’re going to train now (Monday), we’re training Tuesday, Wednesday off. We’re very optimistic.”

Murphy was withdrawn as a precaution from the bench selected against Connacht and is expected to also train fully this week.

McFadden’s season is over because of a hamstring injury while Ruddock continues to be assessed also because of a troublesome hamstring.

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