Planet Rugby

Barkley to leave Grenoble early

13th January 2014 17:10

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Olly Barkley Grenoble

Heading for the exit: Olly Barkley

Grenoble director of rugby Fabrice Landreau has admitted that the French club are hoping to negotiate an end to former England international Olly Barkley's contract.

Grenoble's highest paid player - according to reports in the French press - has also been their biggest recruitment flop.

Signed from Racing Metro in pre-season, the 32-year-old has not been able to find his feet in the Grenoble setup and has failed to meet the expectations of the coaching staff .

"It's a big failure not having been able to properly integrate him into our team project," Landreau told Rugbyrama.

"It is a disappointment for us, but especially for him," added backs coach Franck Corrihons.

"Unfortunately, he never managed to blend into the collective. He had several opportunities early in the Top 14 season and Amlin Cup, but he never managed to leave his mark."

Barkley, who was not at training on Monday, has rarely featured since making the move from the French capital, making his last Top 14 appearance against Clermont back in September.

Last weekend, he was forced off injured during the first-half of the 19-all draw with Viadana in the Challenge Cup, having started in midfield with young Jordan Michallet at fly-half.

"He is a very professional guy, very polite , very gentlemanly," conceded Landreau.

"Unfortunately, we do not have the same conception of rugby. He is disappointed with our game. He wants a much more one stereotypical game, much more organised. He wasn't able to find his place."

Barkley still has another year left on his contract and is believed to want to stay with the club, but with the imminent arrival of Jonathan Wisniewski - the same man who forced his departure from Racing - the Englishman is unlikely to feature in Grenoble's future plans.

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