Surprise, surprise The Rugby Football Union could end Premiership promotion and relegation in order to strike a deal with the clubs over the structure of the season. The RFU wants to reach a long-standing deal with the clubs after the two parties agreed on release dates for England training in August. "Promotion and relegation has always been an article of faith on our side," said RFU chief executive Francis Baron. "But we are prepared to look at that again." Baron added: "We have got to make the breakthrough. "We have been trying for so many years through various negotiations to find a model that is for club and country and we have failed. "Both sides have got to give up some of the dearly held positions they have vigorously defended for many years." The RFU have been keen to retain promotion and relegation in the top flight but some clubs claim long-term investment is stifled by the threat of the drop to National League One. But Baron says he could compromise in order to broker a deal with Premier Rugby, the umbrella organisation which looks after the interests of the 12 Premiership clubs. The RFU and Premier Rugby ended up in court following a row over the release of players for the England Test against New Zealand on 5 November. But in August, the two parties did agree on 16 days when players will be released for England duty this season. And the appointment of Rob Andrew as the RFU's elite director of rugby has raised hopes that the long-running 'club v country' argument can finally be resolved. Premier Rugby now have Gloucester owner Tom Walkinshaw as chair of their negotiation panel, and Baron is confident a deal can be struck when they next meet. "The fact we have sorted out the New Zealand game and the release periods for this year is very positive," he said. "The RFU will go in with an open mind on the way forward and we have put a number of innovative ideas on the table." Surprise surprise...'quins back in the fold, let's nail that trapdoor shut. They'll have the bigger Div 1 teams dancing round like monkeys in a season or two so they can haul up two or three teams from geographical area's they want a presence in (Ie Yorkshire, Brum and Cornwall.