Leicester Tigers close to sealing a deal for back-rower Michael Noone
Leicester Tigers are "finalising a deal" to bring former Leinster and Doncaster Knights back-rower Michael Noone to the club.
The 22-year-old impressed during an A League outing for the club against Newcastle nine days ago, and Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill said he was hopeful that Noone would stay until at least the end of the season.
If any deal is completed, he will become the third back-rower to sign for the club in as many months after Brett Deacon and Richard Thorpe joined from Gloucester and London Irish respectively.
Tigers are also hoping to sign former Bourgoin back-rower, South African Wessel Joost.
Cheap Van Insurance For 17,18 & 19 Year Old Drivers - Call Insure365 01782 898188, Free Legal Protection Cover Included valued at £25.00!
Terms: 1 Voucher Per Customer
Contact: 01782 898188
Valid until: Monday, June 24 2013
The search for new resources has come about after flankers Ben Woods and Craig Newby were forced into retirement due to injury.
Noone is 22 years old and arrives from Doncaster having learnt his trade at Leinster.
He has represented Ireland under-20s, is 6ft 3in and weighs more than 17 stones.
He can play right across the back-row but looks more blindside flanker or No.8 than openside flanker.
"Michael played for the second team last Monday and did very well," said Cockerill.
"We are finalising a contract for him for the rest of the season.
"He is a raw, young player with a lot of physicality and a real edge about him.
"There is a lot of talent that comes out of Ireland and there is not a lot of room at the table for all of those guys in their own country.
"He can play across the back-row and can carry the ball well.
"There is a glint in his eye that you get from some of the Irish boys that you meet and he is dead keen to get the opportunity and has shown some raw ability.
"We need to find the right people to replace the people that have left the club and, at this point, Noone will be a good signing for us."
If Noone puts pen to paper at Leicester, he will be the latest in a long list of Irishmen with roots near Dublin to have played for the club.
Niall Morris and Geordan Murphy are still here, while the likes of Johne Murphy, Leo Cullen, Shane Jennings and Frank Murphy were all part of the squad that blossomed under the leadership of Pat Howard.
Northampton expect their England full-back Ben Foden to be sidelined "for a number of weeks" after he was injured during last Friday's Aviva Premiership victory over Bath.
Foden will see a specialist today, but his immediate prospects of playing do not look good after damaging ankle ligaments.