The merger between Stade Francais and Racing 92 has sent shockwaves throughout European rugby today. The two Paris clubs are coming together in a move that will see them come together, and thus have knock-on effects for both the Top 14 and Champions Cup.
However, it is unclear what will happen with the players, as two squads are morphed into one.
One player who is clearly unhappy with the move is Stade Francais lock Paul Gabrillagues. The Frenchman took to social media to vent his fury in a Stade Francais fan group.
If your French is a bit rusty, this loosely translates as the following:
It’s not a merger, it’s the takeover of the Stade Français by Racing… so the death of our club, the club of Paris. I will not participate in this masquerade. Show yourselves and show that we are many to love this club.
He is clearly not the only player who feels aggrieved by the situation. France star Pascal Pape is another left frustrated, and there are reports that the players may go on strike in protest of the move.
According to @lequipe Pascal Pape was particularly upset when the news was announced. Paper says SF may strike instead of playing Castres
— gavin mortimer (@gavinmortimer7) March 13, 2017
With the news just emerging this morning, the fall-out could rumble on for the coming weeks and months.