"Farrell, Ford…" – 20 England players set to receive hybrid contracts from the RFU

In a groundbreaking development for English rugby, discussions between the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and Premiership Rugby are underway, potentially ushering in a new era of management for the national team, reminiscent of a ‘hybrid contract’ system.

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Sources within the PA news agency reveal that these negotiations aim to grant head coach Steve Borthwick enhanced authority over a select group of Test players. This core group is envisioned to serve as the bedrock of England’s squad as they prepare for the 2027 Rugby World Cup.

In this proposed arrangement, Borthwick would exert more influence over various aspects of each player’s career trajectory, encompassing matters such as conditioning, playing time, and positional roles. In exchange for this increased say in player development, the RFU is contemplating a more substantial financial contribution to clubs, surpassing the current £40,000 per player granted to the Elite Player Squad (EPS).

If this accord is given the green light, it would mark one of the most seismic transformations in the English rugby system since the sport’s transition to professionalism nearly three decades ago. Stay tuned for further developments on this potentially game-changing initiative.

Players likely to receive hybrid contracts:

1. Jamie George (Saracens)

2. Theo Dan (Saracens)

3. Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears)

Ellis Genge, Captain of England during the Summer Nations Series Rugby match between Wales and England at Principality Stadium on August 5, 2023 in Cardiff, Wales. Photo: Phil Mingo/PPAUK

4. Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears)

5. Will Stuart (Bath Rugby)


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