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'If He Makes A Move, Fair Play To Him': Stephen Ferris On Iain Henderson Links To Toulouse

'If He Makes A Move, Fair Play To Him': Stephen Ferris On Iain Henderson Links To Toulouse
Joshua Bell Curran
By Joshua Bell Curran
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With the third round of the Six Nations upon us, Ireland travel to Rome to take on Italy. Top-of-the-table Ireland are fielding a much-changed team from the first two games out, but when you have depth like Andy Farrell, changes don't always mean less experience. Ross Byrne and Craig Casey make the headlines as they take control of the backs for the day, while Ireland veteran Iain Henderson steps into the second row for injured Tadhg Beirne.

Henderson, a true veteran of the Irish team, should be well able to fill the role. The Ulster club captain has won three Six Nations' with Ireland but time waits for no man and the 31-year-old is now being linked with a move to Top 14 giants Toulouse. Henderson is currently in the final year of his contract in Ulster and with the 2023 World Cup likely to be his last, it's easy to see the appeal of a move to the lucrative heights of French rugby.

This week we sat down for a chat with Stephen Ferrisnto discuss his former mooted teammates' move to France, as well as his predictions for Ireland's Six Nations game against the Azzurri.

Iain Henderson featuring in the Six Nations

4 February 2023; Iain Henderson of Ireland during the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Wales and Ireland at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Photo by David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

Ferris on Henderson going to Toulouse

While Henderson has only been linked to the French side, there's already been plenty of talk about will he go or will he stay, but Ferris definitely thinks there could be some feasibility to the rumours.

Yeah I think that actually the rumours coming out of Toulouse, you know of Henderson may be heading over there, I can completely see that and understand that.

Toulouse have got a really good side but the second row is an area where if they lose one of their main guys that they have to drop down the pecking order a little bit.

So for me, yeah, there's a strong possibility he could move.


While Ferris like so many others played out his career as a one-club man in Ulster, the road to France is becoming more popular for Irish players. The clubs in France typically offer much higher wages, making it a lucrative move for Irish players. While any move to France would effectively be the end of his international career, the money that comes with it makes it very attractive, with the likes of Paul O'Connell, Simon Zebo and Johnny Sexton all attempting stints out there. Ferris was acutely aware of these benefits saying,


Money does talk, I'm sure if he went out there he would be very well paid.

If he makes a move, fair play to him and that's what I say to anybody that's coming towards the latter part of their career, if they're given an opportunity you know, give it a shot.

Ferris also pointed out that Henderson is realistically nearing the end of his international career and if he's going to make a move, now is the time to go.


I think he turned 31 earlier on this week, he's not playing as much rugby for Ulster as he would like, he's the club captain, has been for a couple of years, he's a British and Irish Lion, is he going to go on another Lions tour? Probably not is the reality of it. After this world cup is he going to go into another rugby world cup? Probably not. So if he's going to make a move and a move that's financially driven as well it's going to have to be at the end of this contact.

Irish Lions

17 June 2017; Iain Henderson of the British & Irish Lions in action against Nehe Milner-Skudder of the Maori All Blacks during the match between the Maori All Blacks and the British & Irish Lions at Rotorua International Stadium in Rotorua, New Zealand. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Stephen's Six Nations predictions for Ireland v Italy

Speaking about this weekend's Six Nations game Ferris has been giving us his predictions on who'll win and by what.

We've won 22 out of 23 games against Italy, we last lost to them in 2013 when we'd a raft of injuries, they haven't won a home game in the Six Nations, so why is it gonna change tomorrow?

I fancy Ireland by between 20 and 30 points.

Iain Henderson starts in the squad to take on Italy this Saturday in the third round of the Six Nations.

SEE ALSO: Mack Hansen Learned About Power Of Irish Jersey From BOD And David Irwin Visit

Mack Hansen in this years Six Nations

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