Irish rugby fans are delighted to hear that Limerick winger Keith Earls has committed his future to Munster, but are also a little suspicious about previous rumours.
A report surfaced yesterday morning suggesting that the player “was close” to making a move to Aviva Premiership side Saracens.
Following a number of high-profile departures from Leinster, Munster fans were concerned about the possibility of a similar exodus from their own province.
So today’s news that Earls has signed a new three-year deal with the IRFU and Munster was greeted with relief by fans of the Red men.
Good to see Ireland and Munster retain Earls and Murray. Little bit done, lots more to do. #rugby— Shaun Cronin (@ShaunCronin7) January 27, 2016
2 emails in 2 minutes from the IRFU, confirming Earls and Murray have signed new deals. The relief in Limerick can be felt from here.— David McIntyre (@DaveMcIntyreIRL) January 27, 2016
But there’s also a fair bit of cynicism floating around - with many fans increasingly sceptical of ‘rumours’ that pop up around contract negotiation time.
Earls signs new deal.. So Saracens story was a load of rubbish. Just like Cronin to London Irish.— Hugh Cahill (@hughcahill7) January 27, 2016
Great news about Earls and Murray for Munster. Anyone else wondering about leaking of potential bad news, followed by good? #rugby— Daragh Ó Conchúir (@RebelDevil71) January 27, 2016
Rugby players love an auld flirt with the continent and/or the UK come contract time.— Donnchadh Boyle (@depboyle) January 27, 2016
Some are offering plaudits to the player’s agent for some canny negotiating.
Keith Earls' agent has played a blinder! 💶💶💶💶— Team GG (@Guy_Griffiths) January 27, 2016
But, suspicious or not, the announcement is good news for both Munster and Ireland - so it’s a big thumbs up overall.
Massive for Munster that the IRFU have tied down two of their experienced Ireland internationals. Great to keep Earls and Murray at home.— Murray Kinsella (@Murray_Kinsella) January 27, 2016