England George signs up for scandal-stricken Saracens


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London (AFP)

Jamie George has become the first English player to devote his future to the Saracens despite the imminent disgrace of the Premiership and the European champions.

London club to play second level of English rugby union next season after being hit huge penalty of 105 points and fined £ 5.36 million ($ 7.02 million) for violation of the Premiership salary cap.

This put a question mark on the future of the Saracens of English captain Owen Farrell and his fellow World Cup finalists George, Maro Itoje and Elliot Daly.

But George on Thursday in London asked reporters if he would stay there. "This is the plan. I want to stay at the club and I want to be part of the transition. "

It is feared that the English players who remain at the Saracens may risk their future selection for the national team and a place on the team for the British and Irish Lions' tour of South Africa next year.

However, George’s tastes can be further spared by the club’s weekly championship grind, which potentially means they’re fresher for the test.

"I love the club, I am attached to the club and next season could be an opportunity to rest a little more," said George.

As for his fellow Red Rose stars at the Saracens, the veteran of 49 tests for England added: "I really don't know. "

- "Money is not a factor" -

Buckwheats were funded throughout the professional era by Nigel Wray, but the businessman resigned from his post as president following the financial scandal which was partly focused on his policy of not declaring any controversial co-investments with salaries like Farrell, Itoje and Mako Vunipola.

"Money is not a factor at all to me," said George. "It’s great that we make money doing what we love, but at the same time I grew up going to Vicarage Road with my old man.

“Playing for the Saracens was everything. And it's still what I feel now. "

While the Saracen players were largely absolved of the blame, questions were asked as to whether they had any suspicions about the number of star names in a team.

"I never asked myself," insisted George. "We all went through at the same time and the club seemed to be just evolving and obviously things got out of hand in the background and the accounts didn't add up. "

When asked if he was disappointed with the Saracens, the front row added, "It's difficult. They have shown me great loyalty and remorse for what they have done and that is appreciated.

"It is true that the players do not take responsibility.

"The opportunities Nigel Wray has given me as a person from the age of 17 ... he has invested so much time in me and in love, so I will be eternally grateful for that. "

George, 29, added that playing for England meant he had "something else to focus on" away from the Saracens' problems, which intensified with Thursday's announcement that the club’s sponsorship German insurance Allianz would end at the end of the season.

England started the Six Nations with a 24-17 loss to France in Paris - their first match since last year's World Cup final loss to South Africa - before returning to the win with a 13-6 away win over Scotland last weekend.

Their next opponents are Ireland, who are chasing the Grand Slam, coached by Owen’s father Andy Farrell at Twickenham on February 23.

"We realize we have a long way to go and I think Ireland will be a huge test for us," said George.


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