Luke Gale move confirmed: Leeds Rhinos half-back signs for Hull
Former Leeds Rhinos captain Luke Gale has left the club to join Betfred Super League rivals Hull FC on an initial one-year deal.
Hull confirmed the signing this evening (Friday), just hours after the Yorkshire Evening Post broke news of Gale's likely exit with a year remaining on his Rhinos contract.
Gale joined Rhinos from Castleford Tigers in October, 2019, on a three-year contract, but will replace Marc Sneyd - whose signing was announced by Salford Red Devils this afternoon - in Hull's squad for the 2022 campaign.
The 2017 Man of Steel, who began his career in Rhinos' academy, said: “First and foremost, it’s a massive club with lots of ambition and that was a key attractive factor for me.
“It’s a squad that you would consider to be a title-challenging one with plenty of depth for 2022, so I’m massively excited to be joining the club."
Gale added: “I spoke with [coach] Brett [Hodgson] at length last night and he discussed what he expected from me.
"I was really impressed with what I heard and it excited me even more.
“Throughout the Super League era, I have been on the receiving end of this Hull side several times – I just think it’s a really exciting squad to be a part of.
“I think it’s a great fit for me as a player, too.
"With Jake Connor at full-back, that suits me as a player and the strength we have in other areas across the pitch I feel will compliment me hugely, as well.
“It’s a perfect fit for me. I can’t wait to meet the lads and crack on with pre-season training.”
Despite being contracted for next year, Gale's situation at Leeds has been in doubt since he was stripped of the captaincy following a disagreement with coach Richard Agar in July.
He is the third half-back to leave Rhinos since the end of last season, following Rob Lui (retired) and Callum McLelland, who has signed for Castelford, but former Man of Steel nominees Blake Austin and Aidan Sezer are now set to be first choice six and seven next term.
Hodgson said: “Luke is a really high-quality addition for us and his arrival will be significant in changing the dynamic of our team as we continue to evolve and shape our squad for 2022.
“He is a proven international player, a natural leader and a competitor who will have a strong influence on our attack and how we want to play, which will really complement Jake [Connor] and Josh [Reynolds] in our spine.
“I have been really impressed by his attitude and desire to make a real impression at the club and he shares the same beliefs and drive we have as a club, he is hungry for success
“It has been a really exciting few weeks for the club and our recruitment shows the direction we’re looking to take as a team and a club.”
Support the YEP and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news and the latest on Leeds United, With a digital subscription, you see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.