Rugby Union

Jonny Wilkinson on verge of new Toulon deal

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Football News

Jonny Wilkinson is on the verge of signing a new contract with Toulon.

The former England fly-half has accepted a pay cut as part of the deal, according to club president Mourad Boudjellal, and is set to play for another season at Stade Mayol.

“It will be official when it has been signed. But I do not worry too much. Once we agreed, Jonny does not reverse his decision,” he told French paper L’Equipe.

“Now we need to write the contract. I mean to sign it. Jonny has made concessions on his side. He has seen his salary reduced.”

The Daily Telegraph claims Wilkinson was earning in the region of £710,000 per season when he first put pen to paper on a contract with the Top 14 club.

That figure is now set to decrease, but the 2003 World Cup winner is more interested in making the right decision for his body rather than the financial implications.

Wilkinson took his time to decide on whether to extend his current deal, and revealed that his teammates helped him come to a decision.

"In November, I was hesitating as to whether I should extend my contract or not. Mourad said that was not upsetting for him if I hadn't yet made my mind up and that helped me a lot,” added the former Newcastle Falcons star.

"I took the time to reflect on it and to ask questions of others in helping me reach the right decision. I am not going to hide the fact that sometimes I woke up in the morning thinking I should stop and then the next day I changed my mind.

"It is vital never to panic and also not to decide anything too quickly."

Wilkinson spoke to Matt Giteau and Frederic Michalak specifically, admitting their experience and proximity to his position meant their particular input crucial.

"These are guys who play inside and outside me and both play in my position too, so there is no better position to have to see if they think I am doing a good job," he told the Times.

"I also wanted to know where they see their futures. Am I in the way of their future? Am I helping their future? Do they feel comfortable playing alongside me? I was more than willing to hear.

"These are guys for whom I have such great respect, guys from whom you want to hear the negative stuff. But they were really honest and I got the impression that they wanted me there."

Wilkinson, who is the leading scorer in French club rugby this season, will need to be at his best next weekend when the Heineken Cup returns, with Toulon hosting Leicester Tigers in a mouth-watering last eight tie.

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