I've Heard Bath r ment to be signing Butch James - The Springboks Fly-half, anyone no anymore than that?
I've Heard Bath r ment to be signing Butch James - The Springboks Fly-half, anyone no anymore than that? [/b]
Sadly after years of being underpaid (or not paid at all in the amateur game) Rugby Union has looked at football and said "I want that."
And as football wages increase I think Rugby Union will follow behind. I don't think this is quite true with Butch - Gloucester offered more and Steyn and Michalak will be at the Sharks next season - but money will be a big factor.
And once the first big moves were made everyone else has to follow, just to keep pace. Simple economics sadly - we go where the money is. I have no concern for the SH game - there will be plenty of talented players to fill their spots but internationally they will suffer and this will undermine the international game - unless of course the selection policy changes to allow overseas players.
NH rugby is my concern. Soon teams will have to buy in a team of the best players just to compete. And that will create huge schisms of the like we see in the English football premiership. The rich teams will buy good sides and outcompete everyone whereas the poorer teams will never have a hope in hell of competing. It's even worse in France where this has occured already.
The only way to stop this: the salary cap. And while noone adheres to it (with perhaps the exception of Bath, Leeds and possibly others) it's not going to stop it. And I'm sure on paper noone breaks it but while Northern Rock are paying Hayman, Newcastle appear blameless. After all it's run by PRL - can you really see Peter Wheeler giving his club, Leicester, a points deduction? It's rapidly losing control and, honestly, it worries me. [/b]