The winger has fallen foul of Toulon's outspoken president Mourad Boudjellal, who said to media after a recent defeat "he is no longer welcome in Toulon!"
Future of former All Black Julian Savea up in the air after savaging from Toulon boss
Julian Savea left New Zealand considered one of the most lethal wingers in world rugby, with 46 tries in 54 Tests for the All Blacks. But things have failed to spark for him this season at Toulon. And after the French giants took their tenth Top 14 defeat for the season, falling 19-10 to Agen and lying in 11th place in the league, the club’s president took out his anger on the wing.
Talking to French publication RMC Sport, the famously outspoken Mourad Boudjellal said: “I’m going to ask for a DNA test. It is not Savea that we recreated but ‘Savéapas’.
“He must have changed on the plane. If I were him, I would apologise and I would go home. When we reach this level of play, we must apologise and leave.
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“I told him he was released and he was no longer welcome in Toulon!”
As you can imagine, this savage outburst from Boudjellal has drawn international attention. However, Savea, 28, gave a calm and measure response to the Toulon supremo’s comments, as you can see below.
Savea’s wife, Fatima, also took to social media to highlight some of the horrific comments directed at the out-of-form wing online.
She also gave her followers a timely reminder that abuse which goes beyond mere criticism and into abuse can have a seriously damaging affect on a player’s mental wellbeing. As well as the below she also tweeted: “And people wonder why mental health in rugby had become a big problem. Take a minute to be considerate of people’s feelings instead of bashing them behind a keyboard or phone screen.”
Today other’s from the team came out in support, too.
Toulon’s next league match will be against Pau, who are one point and one place above them in the Top 14 table.
It remains to be seen if Savea will be involved with the club at all going forward.