Simon Zebo will extend his stay with Racing 92 into a third season as he is set to activate an additional one-year clause.
Independent.ie understands that Zebo is keen to stay in Paris for a further year, while Racing are also eager to keep him at the club.
The Cork native, who turned 30 last week, signed an initial two-year deal with the French side when he left Munster in 2018, but there was always the option to stay for a further season.
Zebo, his partner and the couple’s three kids have settled well in Paris, so any temptation to move back home will be put on hold for now.
Racing had been flying in the Champions Cup before Covid-19 put a halt to their march, while they had recovered from a difficult start to the Top 14 campaign when the majority of their front-line stars were away at the World Cup,
Zebo has endured an injury-hit season and after suffering a couple of concussions early on, he broke his foot before Christmas, which forced him to miss the European clash against Munster at the U-Arena.
The 35-times capped Ireland international has fully recovered now however, and has played the majority of his rugby at full-back since moving to Racing, but he is set to have more competition for his spot come next season.
Wallaby Kurtley Beale is believed to be close to agreeing terms with a move to the Parisian giants, while Brice Dulin is set to join Ronan O’Gara at La Rochelle.
Speaking on Off The Ball, Zebo confirmed that he has the option to stay with Racing for another year, although he remained coy about his plans.
“I signed a two-plus-one (contract), so I have the third year as well, potentially, so we will have to see,” Zebo said.
However, it is understood that Zebo will be playing his rugby with Racing next year. before he assesses his options at the end of the third year.
Munster signed Mike Haley to replace Zebo, while they have also just recruited a second English-born, Irish-qualified full-back in Matt Gallagher, who is due to arrive from Saracens this summer.
Zebo also revealed that he hadn’t spoken to Andy Farrell since he took over as Ireland head coach, but he insisted that he has a good relationship with him.
“It is very exciting at the moment in Racing and I am really happy to be here, but obviously I do miss home and I will never not have a love for Munster,” Zebo added.
“They are probably the one club that I would go back to.
“Going back to play in Thomond Park would be special. It would be incredible to go back. I would really love to do it, but sometimes you don’t get dealt those cards.
“I genuinely love life in Paris. I could not be happier day-to-day and my family do too. There would be a lot going into that decision.
“The World Cup (2023) is there but I would probably be too old so that wouldn’t hold much weight. It’ll be either home or Paris.”