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Leinster's Jimmy Gopperth lined up to be Wasps' next No 10

By Nick Purewal

Dai Young has admitted Leinster's Jimmy Gopperth could replace Andy Goode as Wasps' frontline fly-half next season.

Rugby director Young confirmed Wasps are in talks with former Newcastle playmaker Gopperth and expects his recruitment drive to be complete by the end of January.

Young is targeting five players as Wasps build on their move to Coventry's Ricoh Arena, with "prize asset" Joe Launchbury already tied to a new deal.

Goode remains in negotiations over a new Wasps contract, but the 34-year-old's chances could be limited with Scotland's Ruaridh Jackson still to return from long-term knee trouble.

The Coventry-born goal-kicker set a new individual Premiership points record of 33 in his Wasps' debut at his hometown Ricoh Arena in Sunday's 48-16 victory over London Irish, but is now fighting for his future.

"Absolutely Jimmy Gopperth is in the mix," said Young. "There are a number of high-profile 10s that are available this year, and that's all part of the bigger picture.

"We're hoping to be able to resolve that over the next few weeks.

"We're in discussions with Andy about moving things forward, the same as we are with a number of other players.

"We're certainly not far off resolving things on the recruitment front right across the board really, so certainly by the end of January things will be a lot clearer."

Gopperth's Leinster exit has been all-but inevitable since Ireland and British and Irish Lions fly-half Johnny Sexton completed a deal to return to his home province from Racing Metro next term.

Belfast Telegraph

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