French round-up: Jouffret’s new club, Casty on future and his replacement revealed

Louis Jouffret gets the ball away. Featherstone Rovers 18 v. Barrow Raiders 16 - Coral Challenge Cup 4th Round - 22nd February 2020

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Jouffret returns to France

France international Louis Jouffret has signed for Avignon, after Ottawa Aces pulled the plug on the 2021 campaign. With the Aces not taking part in the 2021, it left Jouffret and the rest of their signings without a club. The former Batley and Featherstone half-back has now decided to join the club where he started his career in Elite 1.

He said: “It is really a pleasure to have the opportunity to come back to my training club. It was always important to me to come back and play here where it all began.

“There is a great group of which I already know almost all of them having already played with in the French team or in the young category at the SOA. Personally I hope to be able to help the team to improve, and for me to have fun on the pitch. I can’t wait to start and play the rugby that I love again.”

Seguier to step up

Catalans coach Steve McNamara says young forward Paul Seguier can step up to fill the void left by captain Remi Casty, who was released by the club this week. Seguier, 23, has made six first team appearances in 2020. McNamara also told the local press that youngsters Matthieu Laguerre, Corentin Le Cam, Joe Chan and Mathieu Cozza would get their chance in 2021.

Casty wants to remain in Super League

The future for Casty may lie in Toulouse, if the French club are accepted to Super League. The 35-year-old, who lifted the Challenge Cup in 2018, says his number one goal is to remain in the top flight.

He said: “I know that I can bring something to any team.” His plan is to play on and feature for France at the 2021 World Cup.

Albert departs Dragons for Carcassonne

Another departure from Catalans is half-back Lucas Albert, who has made the decision to leave Super League to join Carcassonne in Elite 1. The 22-year-old has been left frustrated by the lack of opportunities at the Dragons, where he made 54 appearances since debut in 2015. He said: “My ambitions are to win titles with Carcassonne XIII, to be the best on weekends, to be selected for the French team and to perform well.”

Elite 2 star bolsters Palau

Forward Tely Pelo has joined Palau Broncos from VARL, as the Elite 2 season continues to be suspended. The New Caledonian was a stand out for VARL last season, scoring 10 tries in 13 appearances. A former London Skolars and Toulouse player, Pelo would return to VARL should the Elite 2 season resume, though that isn’t expected until March at the earliest. He said: “Thank you to the leaders of VARL for being able to free me for this challenge.”

Presidency drama

One of the presidential candidates for the upcoming FFR election has been declared ineligible. Luc Lacoste was one of six that were removed from the list of 72. He was heading up the campaign by the so-called Perspectives XIII. The other presidential candidates are Andre Janzac and Fabienne Albert. The election is due to take place on December 12.

Avignon 28-40 Lezignan

A strong start helped Lezignan to a win away at Avignon, in a game re-arranged from the first round of Elite 1 fixtures. Tries from Theo Bonnriez, Thomas Soler and Damien Cardace had them 16-0 to the good early on, only for the hosts to pull it back to 16-12. Two sin-bins put Lezignan at a disadvantage, but they still took a 20-18 lead in to half-time. Avignon took the lead for the first time early in the second half, with Lezignan still down to 12, but that was the only time they would lead. Once Dorian Gouzy restored the visitors’ advantage, they never looked back and when Remi Andreu was sinbinned for the hosts at 32-22 with five minutes left, the game was all but gone.


  • St Esteve v St Gaudens (Sat)
  • Albi v Villeneuve (Sat)
  • Avignon v Limoux (Sun)
  • Lezignan v Toulouse (Sun)
  • Palau v Carcassonne (Sun)
About James Gordon 7067 Articles
Love Rugby League editor. Founded the website back in 2005. Worked with a range of clubs and sponsors during that time. Also commentates for BBC.

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