England fly half George Ford’s time at Bath would appear to be coming to an end.
The 23-year-old’s contract with the Premiership club is not due to expire until the end of the 2017/18 season, but a report in the Times on Wednesday has claimed that Ford has triggered a clause in the deal, allowing him to leave for nothing at the end of the current campaign.
Ford joined Bath in 2013 with his father Mike as Head Coach, but with Ford senior losing his job at the Rec at the end of last season, reports have since suggested that Ford junior was left “upset and disappointed” by his father’s dismissal.
Ford had stated as recently as June of this year that he would see out the remaining two years of his contract (at least) with the club, but the rumoured presence of the aforementioned clause meant that there was always a chance that the partnership could come to a premature end.
Of course, there is no 100% guarantee that Ford will follow up the activation of this clause by ultimately leaving. The report notes that Bath’s strong start to the new Premiership season, winning six of their first seven games, could yet convince the England international to stay.
To counter that argument, however, the activation of a release clause isn’t the greatest show of commitment by any means.
The likes of Sale Sharks and Northampton Saints and Leicester Tigers have been touted as possible future destinations for Ford – as have Toulon, but England head coach Eddie Jones has already warned him that a move abroad would be detrimental to his international career.
In the more immediate future, Ford is with the England squad for the their Autumn internationals, with Fiji the next opponents at Twickenham this coming Saturday.
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