Hartley rejects ‘very generous offer’

Date published: December 17 2014

England hooker Dylan Hartley has rejected a mega offer from Top 14 club Montpellier to sign a new deal with Northampton.

The 28-year-old has revealed that he was given a ‘very generous offer’ by the club to move to France.

However, Hartley along with six others has opted to remain with Premiership champions Saints ad outlined his reasons on Wednesday.

Hartley stated that the move would have had no impact on his England career ahead of next year’s World Cup, while turning down the possibility of ‘300 days of sunshine’ was not easy.

“It’s no secret I was offered a deal to join one of the leading French sides, Montpellier, which would have been worth significantly more. But money isn’t everything,” Hartley wrote in his column in The Sun.

“I don’t want to come across all ‘holier than thou’ over this, but I do believe the world loyalty has gone out of fashion a bit – and for me that really means something.

“I have a great admiration for the one-club men, across a variety of sports, and if I can finish my career with Saints as my only professional club I’ll be a very proud man.

“Saints have shown incredible loyalty towards me, particularly during my well-documented disciplinary issues, and it’s great that I can take this opportunity to try to repay their faith in me.

“And I’m obviously aware that staying at Saints means I will continue to be eligible for England in the run-up to the 2019 World Cup, not just next year’s competition.

“A move to Montpellier would not have threatened my participation in 2015 as I would not have joined them officially until after the World Cup.

“That, the very generous money they were offering and the promise of around 300 days of sunshine made the opportunity to play abroad very tempting.

“But I’ve no doubt that I’ve made the right decision.”