Rugby Players Association Not Consulted After Huge Transfer Loophole Closed
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This could cause some serious problems.
Premiership clubs yesterday closed a transfer loophole in player contracts due to recent transfer activities.
The decision to make the changes comes in the wake of Jonny May’s controversial move from Gloucester to Premiership rivals Leicester. The England winger was allowed to move due to a clause in his contract that allowed him to move on while under contract, for a fixed compensation fee.
12 Premiership clubs voted unanimously to put and end to this and close the loophole on Tuesday. Prior to the change, the regulation in the Premiership code of conduct enabled a player to be bought out of his contract by another club for a set transfer fee.
The fee was a one-off payment of one year’s salary of what the player was being offered by the club trying to purchase him, or what he was currently being paid – whichever was higher.
According to BBC Sport, the change now means the two clubs must negotiate a fee for transfer. The change has been put in place to protect smaller teams from losing their young talent on lower salaries being taken away for small fees.
It’s now been revealed however that the decision was made without consultation with the Rugby Players Association (RPA).
“We’re talking to the players about how this will potentially impact on their careers,” RPA chief executive Damian Hopley told BBC Sport.
“We want to ensure the players feel there is an open dialogue to be had. This has to work for both parties [clubs and players], and be done in a professional and swift way.”
“It must be dealt with in a fair and reasonable fashion, otherwise this could turn into a free-for-all and destabilise the entire marketplace,” he said.