Gloucester Rugby have confirmed the signing of Leicester’s Ed Slater, with Jonny May going the other way.
Speculation around the transfer has been widespread of late and it is thought that the swap involves a monetary figure heading to the Cherry and Whites as part of the deal. This figure, according to Gloucestershire Live, is said to be around £150,000.
Slater, who has been on the radar of the West Country club for more than a season now, made 130 appearances for the Tigers and was part of the 2013 Aviva Premiership-winning team.
Gloucester’s director of rugby David Humphreys had this to say on Slater’s arrival:
“We are really happy that Ed Slater has agreed to join Gloucester,” Humphreys told the club’s official website.
“I have long been an admirer of Ed. Through With his leadership, experience and power, he can add to our forward pack and we have tried to bring him to Kingsholm in the past previously.
“We firmly believe that Gloucester is an exciting club to be at, with a bright future under Johan Ackermann, and we are excited to see what Ed can bring to the Cherry and White jersey.
“We’ve made no secret of our intent to have an abrasive forward unit and Ed’s skillset is exactly what we have been looking for.”
Humpherys also commented on Jonny May and his departure:
“Jonny approached the club and explained he wanted to leave Gloucester and immediately our attention turned to strengthening the squad and the type of person we needed to recruit.
“Jonny has been a big part of Gloucester over the past 9 years and everybody at the club wishes him the best in his future career. He has been an outstanding player, and very popular with the Gloucester supporters.
“But once he decided he didn’t want to play for the club again we had to move on and strengthen the squad ahead of the new season.”
May, who has scored nine tries in 27 England appearances, departs having lined out for Gloucester over 120 times.
The Cherry and Whites will be hopeful that the winning mentality of Slater can help the club improve on a disappointing ninth place finish in last season’s Aviva Premiership.
Meanwhile, Leicester will be boosted ahead of the new campaign with this addition, particularly given May’s international experience. Aged just 27, he is also coming into the prime of his career and offers head coach Matt O’Connor a fresh option in attack.
Matthew Hardy, Pundit Arena
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