Toulon president responds to speculation linking Manoa with Saints return

Samu Manoa has been linked with a return to Saints (picture: Sharon Lucey)
Samu Manoa has been linked with a return to Saints (picture: Sharon Lucey)

Toulon president Mourad Boudjellal has poured cold water on speculation Samu Manoa could be set for a return to Saints.

With Saints looking to fill the void left by Louis Picamoles’ move to Montpellier, there were rumours that Manoa may come back to Franklin’s Gardens.

The 32-year-old was a hugely popular figure at Northampton after joining from San Francisco Golden Gate in 2011, winning the supporters’ player of the year award in 2013 and 2014.

He helped the club to claim a Premiership and Challenge Cup double in 2014, but the lure of a big-money switch to Toulon proved too much as he exited Saints a year later.

The club did hold talks with Manoa in a big to bring him back last summer, but there is no suggestion they have attempted to sign the American ace again this year.

And Boudjellal has insisted that no offer has been made by Saints, who would need to buy Manoa out of his contract, which is understood to be worth around £600k per year and runs until 2019.

“I read a lot of things in the press,” Boudjellal told the French media. “I read that Northampton has made me a wonderful offers for Samu. But I’m still waiting. All this is wrong.”