Simon Zebo Explains Reason For Munster Return As Fullback Signs “Below His Market Value”
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Simon Zebo will once again be a Munster player next season with the Racing 92 fullback signing a one-year deal with his home province for the 2021/22 campaign.
The 31-year-old has spent the last three seasons in Paris with Racing but is out of contract with the Top 14 side in the summer.
Zebo has been linked with a number of clubs in recent months and it turns out he has taken a significant pay-cut in order to return to Munster and make himself eligible once again for Ireland selection.
Speaking following the announcement, Munster head coach Johann van Graan revealed that Zebo has signed a deal at a level “below his market elsewhere.”
“The opportunity to bring Simon back to Munster came about in early April following a final review of our squad’s budgetary position for season-end and with assistance from the IRFU to support what we believe is a really good deal for Munster and Irish Rugby,” van Graan said.
“Simon’s desire to return to Ireland and play with his home club is illustrated by his willingness to sign at a level below his market value elsewhere. This has made bringing the province’s all-time leading try-scorer back home, possible.”
Zebo himself revealed the chance to return home and potentially were a green jersey again convinced him to make the move. Interestingly the contract is co-funded by Munster and the IRFU, suggesting Andy Farrell has plans for him.
“Munster holds a very special place in my heart and I’ve always said that I wanted to play for them and potentially Ireland again, so when this opportunity arose the lure of being close to home, family and friends and Munster fans, it outweighed all other options,” Zebo said.
“I cannot wait to get back to the HPC with the team and hopefully a packed Thomond Park.”