Former Catalans Dragons halfback Lucas Albert has gone full-circle back into Super League after signing a two-year deal with newly promoted Toulouse Olympique.
The 23-year-old French international was released by the Dragons last year and joined his hometown Elite One side Carcassonne, but he has made a swift return to the top-flight under Sylvain Houles at Stade Ernest Wallon.
“It feels good to be back,” Albert told League Express.
“There is something special happening here in Toulouse and it’s good to be a part of it.
“We all know that the hard work starts now. Super League is another level, but we have a great squad already and there is a g really good mood in the group. I’m very happy to be a part of it.”
Albert, who missed out on international selection for Saturday’s France-England Test match because he is in the final stages of recovery from a knee injury, will be reuniting with his former Catalans team-mate and captain following Rémy Casty’s appointment as assistant coach for the Olympians.
Casty, 36, retired as a player following Toulouse’s Grand Final victory over Featherstone Rovers but he will return to Super League in a coaching role next year.
He told League Express, “It was a very easy decision to join the coaching team at Toulouse.
“This is an exciting time for this club and it is good to be a part of it.
“My role will be to work with the forwards and I can’t wait to get started. I’ve played the whole of my career in the middle of the pitch and I hope I can pass on some of my experience especially to the younger players.
“I will approach the role exactly as I did as a player. I always wanted to get to the very top and it will be the same now, I want to learn alongside Sylvain and help this club succeed in Super League.”
Toulouse have extended the contract of centre Guy Armitage for a further twelve months following an injury-hit season in the Championship.
The 29-year-old brother of rugby union star Steffon will remain with Toulouse until at least the end of 2022 following his trial switch from London Broncos.
Toulouse Chairman Bernard Sarrazain said, “We have all been very impressed with Guy’s attitude since he joined us on trial. He has had to work very hard to come back from injury, but he has been very good for us on the pitch and he deserves to be with us in Super League next year.”
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