Wasps desperate to keep Launchbury

Date published: September 26 2014

Dai Young has vowed to do everything in his power to keep hold of Joe Launchbury, but admits Saracens are interested in the lock.

The England international is one of the key members of the Wasps pack, and a product of the club’s academy.

Young has already singled him out as one of the players around which Wasps are building their future, however his current contract ties him to the club only until the end of the season.

And Young has admitted that Saracens are eager to bring in the 23-year-old, who would follow in the footsteps of former Wasps number eight Billy Vunipola if he were to make the switch.

“It’s well documented that Saracens are interested in Joe, but then who wouldn’t be interested in him? It’s no surprise to us that other clubs want him,” Young said.

“Joe’s the type of guy who doesn’t like talking about things. He’s not the easiest to pin down because he just wants to play rugby.

“We’ll do everything in our power to keep hold of him, but we felt the same about Billy Vunipola, although the family issue was key to Billy leaving.

“We don’t even want to think about replacing Joe but, if we have to, we will.

“You can’t force people to sign. He’s the only guy in our set-up who we regard as having a big part in our future plans who hasn’t committed.

“We understand where he’s coming from because we’ve been through some tough times at Wasps when we had financial problems and didn’t have the squad to compete.

“Joe was one of five or six players who probably carried us a little bit.

“He wants to be confident that he’s signing for a club that’s ambitious and moving forward on and off the field, is financially stable and is the right place for him to play his rugby.

“We’re very confident he’ll stay, but until that signature is on the paper you’ll never know.

“He realises as well as we do the earlier he makes his decision the better.”