Dan Carter to join Racing Metro after Rugby World Cup
World rugby's leading points scorer and 2012 player of the year to join French giants on a money-spinning three-year deal in 2015
Dan Carter will join French giants Racing Metro on a three-year deal after next year’s Rugby World Cup in England.
The move will bring a close to the 32-year-old’s glittering international career, with the All Blacks centurion returning to French rugby following his injury-hit seven-month spell with Perpignan in 2008.
Having visited France many times, including my time with Perpignan, I know what the French culture and their rugby culture is like and it’s something I really love.
Carter has been much sought after by the big-spending French clubs, despite a recent run of bad injuries that has seen him feature in just eight of the All Blacks’ last 28 internationals, with his move to Paris set to be worth a record deal worth €1.8 million (£1.4m), according to Toulon owner Mourad Boudjellal, who is chasing the signature of All Blacks centre Ma’a Nonu.
The arrival of the Crusaders star will see the southern hemisphere’s premier outside-half replace the northern hemisphere’s current number one, as Johnny Sexton returns home to Leinster.
“It’s going to be an awesome adventure for me and my family,” Carter said.
“Having visited France many times, including my time with Perpignan, I know what the French culture and their rugby culture is like and it’s something I really love.
“Having said that, it’s the immediate future that is exciting me at the moment. 2015 is going to be a big year and I’m looking forward to getting into it.”
Carter, who will be 33 when he links up with his new team-mates in the French capital, is the latest star to agree a pre-Rugby World Cup move north after Australian centre Adam Ashley-Cooper penned a deal to join Bordeaux-Begles, while Harlequins have snared former Australia captain James Horwill this week.
More star names reaching the end of their international careers are expected to leave Australia and New Zealand for big contracts in the Top 14 and Aviva Premiership after rugby union’s showpiece event.
He is still in the midst of a wonderful career, both as a provincial and Super Rugby player and an All Black, and will leave us as the greatest first five-eighth ever.
With both nations opting not to select players based overseas, it means an inevitable changing of the guard in many respects, particularly for the All Blacks, who won the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
All Blacks prop Charlie Faumuina has also reportedly secured a move to Racing, while All Blacks flanker and captain Richie McCaw and centre Conrad Smith are also out of contract with New Zealand Rugby in 2015.
“On behalf of the All Blacks, I want to congratulate Dan on his decision and also on his career to date,” said New Zealand head coach Steve Hansen.
“He is still in the midst of a wonderful career, both as a provincial and Super Rugby player and an All Black, and will leave us as the greatest first five-eighth ever.
“Whilst he hasn’t finished yet in New Zealand, he has already set the benchmark for first five play, and we look forward to seeing him out on the paddock in 2015.”