Taulupe Faletau will return to Wales next season as number 8 for the British and Irish Lions reflects on a move to Cardiff after five years in Bath.
- Taulupe Faletau will return to Wales next season, as confirmed by his club Bath
- The No. 8 Welshman is considering moving to Cardiff to see his international career
- Faletau, 30, has suffered injuries during his time in the Premiership
- His departure from Bath will free up more than £ 400,000 per year for the West Country Club.
Taulupe Faletau will return to Wales next season, his English club Bath has confirmed.
The No. 8 Welshman, 30, is considering moving to Cardiff to see his international career after leaving the Dragons for England in 2016.
Faletau’s season in Bath has been plagued by injuries and while he has remained the star of Wales when fit, he failed to make the expected impact in the Premiership, appearing only 64 times in five years.
Taulupe Faletau will return to Wales next season five years after moving to Bath
As one of the top earners, at over £ 400,000 a year, Faletau’s departure will free up cash for the country club to the west. In some quarters, his move has been seen as a result of the dispute between the players’ agents and the Premiership clubs.
The English parties have refused to pay agent fees after a recent HMRC tax change, so it is now up to the players to order funding from their representatives.
If Faletau stayed in England, the implications of paying his own agents’ fees, and the additional tax, are considered important in his decision to return to Wales. Sources have indicated that he may not be the first to make this decision due to the new regulations.
The number 8 Welshman is considering moving to Cardiff to see his international career in Wales
Confirming that rugby news director Stuart Hooper said: ‘It remains a privilege to work with Taulupe; It is a world-class number 8 that has a significant impact on the field.
‘When everyone is fit and well, we have a solid back row and fierce competition in all three positions. As we develop our squad for 2022, a crucial factor is the availability of our players throughout the season. Having a squad that can compete on the international calendar is becoming critical as the quality of competition in the Premiership increases.
Taulupe leaves with our blessing and we all wish him the best for his future. Of course, we will give you a brilliant send-off when the time comes; until then, our focus remains determined on running a campaign that we can all be proud of. ”
Faletau’s departure frees up more than £ 400,000 per year in wages as he is the top earner in Bath.
Three-time Leon Faletau added: ‘I will leave Bath at the end of the season with good memories, both professionally and personally, as well as two sons born in Bath. Bath has been a brilliant club for me over the years and I owe it a lot.
“I feel lucky to have played with such a great group of guys and I know that Bath’s success is coming.
“ I will miss the team and everyone at the club, but my heart is determined to return to Wales and hopefully continue my international playing ambitions. It is the right time for my family and I to return home.
“To date, I am disappointed that I have not been able to personally contribute more, but I am looking forward to giving it my all for the rest of the season in blue, black and white.
‘To the fans who continue to support through the ups and downs, thank you.’