Gloucester replace NFL hopeful Louis Rees-Zammit with Christian Wade

Gloucester have signed former Wasps and England winger Christian Wade – who quit rugby in 2018 to join the NFL’s International Player Pathway – just weeks after losing ex-Wales star Louis Rees-Zammit to the same programme.

The 32-year-old will join from French club Racing 92 ahead of the 2024/25 season and will help fill the void left by Rees-Zammit’s shock move to the US.

Wade was drafted to the Buffalo Bills in 2019 but never played a competitive NFL match and returned to rugby in 2022.

“I’m excited to be returning to the Premiership next season and for a great club like Gloucester,” Wade said.

“After speaking with George (Skivington), I believe in his vision and ambition for the team and I can’t wait to play my part in that.

“I have fond memories of playing at Kingsholm in Wasps colours so I’m looking forward to getting out there in Cherry & White next season.”

Wade played just one Test for England but was selected for the British and Irish Lions’ 2013 tour of Australia.

Head coach Skivington said: “It’s been clear since he returned from America that he has come back in even better shape and still has that sixth sense for the try line that he had before he left.

“We’ve got a pretty exciting stock of back three players here, but it’s hugely pleasing to add someone of Christian’s experience to that group.”