Sale director of rugby Steve Diamond says star fly-half Danny Cipriani is expected to ink a new deal with the Premiership club in the next few days.
Cipriani has been widely linked with a big-money move to France – reportedly to European champions Toulon – but was recalled into England’s 34-man Six Nations training squad, reigniting hopes that his international career has a future.
The 27-year-old was expected to move abroad if he was left out of England boss Stuart Lancaster’s plans but Cipriani is now targeting a World Cup place and looks set to stay put as he tries to cement to place in the national setup.
“It is not signed on the dotted line yet, but it will be over the next three to four days,” Diamond told the Daily Telegraph
“We are very close to agreeing terms as we speak. We are just crossing the T’s and dotting the I’s over Danny’s career at Sale.
“I have confirmed to him that we are ambitious and want to be more than a top-six side over the next few years and he believes in that, believes in what we are doing and the crowds are building as we want them to.
“There’s a lot of conjecture about what other clubs spend, but what we spend is linked to what comes through the gate. If we can continue to get 8,500 and 10,000 crowds then we can be ambitious as the rest and that’s what Danny wanted to hear.”
Cipriani is his third season with Sale and the last on his existing contract having joined from the Melbourne Rebels. His last appearance for England came on last year’s tour of New Zealand, when he won his ninth cap, but was not included in the squad for the November internationals.
Diamond said Cipriani should consider a move to Toulon “in three years’ time”, adding: “To a certain extent it is good to be a big fish in a small pond rather than joining Toulon where you are a Harlem Globetrotter.”