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SextoN 'STAY OR GO' ultimatum

Racing Metro have given Ireland out-half Jonathan Sexton an ultimatum to play out his career in Paris or move on next season.

"The deal is simple - either he extends and finishes his career here or he returns to Ireland," said Racing coach Laurent Labit.

Owner Jacky Lorenzetti has put a four-year contract under the nose of Sexton, presumably along the same financial lines as the previous two-year €700,000 per annum deal.

"He is thinking it over. We have discussed it with him," said Labit.

"In his hands, he has a proposal for a further four years with Racing. This is what he has to think about. But we know him, he's okay with it."

The fact that Sexton's wife, Laura, gave birth to their first child, Luca, recently must enter into the equation as he contemplates sealing his financial future.

"Like he says, his son was born here and in 20 years he could be France's fly-half," he said.

Racing have shown their commitment to contend for Championship honours and the European Rugby Cup with the signature of the excellent 22 year-old Springbok out-half Johan Goosen to contest the number ten jersey with Sexton.

This sends a signal of intent to the other powerhouse clubs in Europe and gives Sexton a narrow window of opportunity.

Leinster coach Matt O'Connor spoke on Wednesday of how Leinster would be open to making a bid for the return of Sexton.

"You'd like him back. He's a world-class player and he's proven that across the course of his career," he said.

"We've still got good links with Johnny. We'd be very keen to have a conversation if he chooses to come back."

Leinster's paymasters, the IRFU, led by Tom Grace, Ireland coach Joe Schmidt and O'Connor will have to bring all of their negotiation skills to the table. They cannot compete on a financial footing.

The only question that really matters is: have Racing Metro made an offer that is simply too good to refuse? That could very well be the case.


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