Phil Egan
Phil Egan

07.58 11 Jul 2019


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London Irish head coach Les Kiss insists the majority of their fans support the decision to bring Paddy Jackson to the club.

Jackson was signed from Perpignan after one season with the French club. The 27-year-old made the move to France in an attempt to rebuild his career after his contracts with Ulster and Ireland were terminated

Jackson and Stuart Olding, were both acquitted of rape in March last year following a nine-week trial.

Long-standing sponsor Diageo has ended its sponsorship of the club due to the signing of Jackson while some London Irish fans have vowed to boycott the Madejski Stadium.

Kiss insists the only consideration in signing Jackson was his playing ability.

Kiss, who worked with Jackson at Ulster, said: "The bottom line is that if you look at everything, I think there is more support than not. That's my view.

"First and foremost Paddy is a good rugby player and it's an opportunity for him to further his career. He saw that as a good opportunity.

"People will have their opinions on the back story and the past, but we believe what we are about and we believe we are doing the right thing.

Kiss added: "Things will be thrown at us I guess, but the story is about everyone - we have signed a lot of good players.

"Ultimately we are a team and we will go out and play that way and come what may we will stick together.

"Obviously I know Paddy and he's a quality footballer so that is what we're focused on.

"Ultimately that is what our conversation was about and where we will stay with it.

"The bottom line is it is a rugby club that is looking for good players and we have signed Paddy.

"I understand that this becomes a story but ultimately we want to make sure we focus on the right things."

 


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