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From being told he would not play for England again by RFU chiefs when he crossed the Channel, Haskell then found himself being told he would not play for Stade again when he refused to return during this year’s RBS 6 Nations.
But this latest club-versus-country row is now close to being resolved while the blindside specialist says he ‘will not throw his toys out of the pram’ after being dropped for the Heineken Cup quarter final against Toulouse.
He said: “From my perspective I was disappointed not to be involved against Toulouse. I felt I had earned my place but sometimes things go against you.
“Anyone would be disappointed to be dropped but there is such talent in this squad that he can’t be a surprise. Sergio Parisse did not start in the semi-final of the play-offs last year: I am not about to throw my toys out the pram about it.
“As the first player who went over with an EPS contract, there were going to be some difficulties.
“The release period during the Six Nations is a case of misinterpretation and we are close to sorting it out. I love France and I love the team but playing for England has always been my first priority.
“I call it the curse of the Haskells. Even when I do nothing I can still get in trouble but I had one conversation with both Martin (Johnson) and Stade and that was it.
“It was not a massive issue for me. It was breaking all around me but when I was at Pennyhill Park I did not pick up the papers or let it bother me.
“People seem to have more opinions about me than anyone else and if I spent my life worrying about them then I would have probably quit rugby a while ago.
“That’s why I like living in France – I am a no-one there. I have never been stopped in the street but that’s what I am enjoying.
“It has not affected my relationship with either Martin (Johnson) or Max (Guazzini). My contract will be 100 per cent clear regarding England commitments going forward.”
Things could have been much easier for Haskell. He could have stayed at Adams Park where he had a ready-made place as the great Lawrence Dallaglio’s successor.
For all the accusations that he was chasing money or turning his back on his country by leaving his boyhood club, few people considered that he was actually going for rugby reasons alone: to play alongside Sergio Parrise, to experience home matches in a packed Stade de France and to sample a different rugby culture.
But best-laid plans have a habit of going off track as Stade’s season has disintegrated.
With the always unpredictable Guazzini at the helm, Stade have recently announced their second coaching change of the campaign with the appointment of Leinster boss Michael Cheika from next season.
Defeat to bottom side Albi last week meant Stade have the second fewest victories in the Top 14 but Haskell is confident Cheika can turn around their fortunes next season.
He said: “He has created an incredibly professional outfit at Leinster and that’s exactly what we need here.
“You can’t argue with the success he has enjoyed there in the Heineken Cup and the squad can’t wait to link up with him.
“Of course I am disappointed that results have not gone our way. With the talent we have we should be much higher up in the table and I have never played in a team where I felt we can score a try any time we get possession.
“I think the changes have not helped especially with the coaches. We could really do with a period of stability.
“But I have no regrets over my move here. It has been the best rugby season of my career not in terms of winning things but my rugby development has really taken off.
“I have played lots of games and learnt a huge amount which vindicates my decision to come here.
“I wanted to expand my game and increase my skillset because I was getting a bit lost over in England.
“I am going nowhere. I have seen consistent improvements to my game which has been great but now I want to start winning things with Stade.”