Toulon boss tells the whole story of Rhys Webb release saga

French club Toulon has hit back Wales international Rhys Webb following his latest criticism on the Top 14 side.

“I see that Rhys has complained about the way we treated him in Toulon. He just omitted a few big details. In fact, there were several aspects.

“The first, when he announced to me last June that his wife wanted to return to Wales. I asked him if that was a problem for him. He told me that it was not and assured me that he will keep all of his commitments. I, for my part, agreed to arrange his timetable in complete transparency with respect to the other players so that he could see his family from time to time.

“In October we hear that his CV is circulating in England. We asked Rhys if he wanted to leave but he categorically denied it. Then in December, he announced that he no longer wanted to go through with his contract and wanted to be released.

“I explained to him that the moment was not very well chosen but that I could understand. He still assured me that he was going to have a big end of the season. For my part, I spoke with (director) Laurent Emmanuelli and to the president so that he released him for free. Rhys thanked me.

“As soon as he had this agreement, he approached the Welsh federation to try to be reinstated in the national team for the Six Nations and we learned in January, 24 hours before a match, that he would now be selectable.

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“Disappointed by his behaviour, I decided to leave him out despite the absence of (Baptiste) Serin and the unavailability of (Anthony) Meric. I didn’t give him an explanation since he didn’t give one to me. I don’t think loyalty can be one way. It’s a framework that I cannot override. No player is above the institution.

“We did a lot for him, I just expected loyalty and involvement from him. From the moment he left us in trouble, it was clear that we were no longer his priority, so we had to negotiate his immediate and final exit.”


Bath Rugby transfers: 4 realistic replacements for Rhys Webb

Bath are set to lose two scrum-halves in the summer with Rhys Webb joining the Ospreys and Will Chudley set to be a free agent.

Webb was only ever join on a short-term deal having already agreed on a move to the Welsh Region, moving to the Rec after his deal at Toulon was terminated.

Meanwhile, Chudley has started eight Premiership games this season with another three appearances off the bench as he and Chris Cook have competed for the nine jersey for most of the 2019/20 campaign.

Here are four possible signings they could make:

1. Ben Spencer

The Saracens and England playmaker has been heavily linked with a move to the Rec, and certain reports suggest he’s already signed a three-year contract. However, two months on we’ve still had no confirmation, meaning we’ve had a look at some other options available to Bath boss Stuart Hooper.

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