Sale Sharks continued their supposedly sudden spending spree on Thursday morning with the announcement that Connacht and USA Eagles fly-half Alan Junior 'AJ' MacGinty will be joining the club ahead of the 2016-17 season.
MacGinty, an American international with a remarkable 90 points in eight international tests, only signed his first professional deal (with Connacht) after impressing for the Red, White and Blue at last year's World Cup and is the first step Sale have taken to replace their outgoing incumbent Danny Cipriani, although it appears that a deal for another fly-half, or at least a 'playmaker' is in the off.
Who the mystery fly-half/playmaker emerges to be however should ultimately shape the expectations placed on MacGinty's shoulders for next season.
Right now it is unclear whether MacGinty will slot in as Sale's first choice fly-half next season or whether, should an even higher profile five-eight be signed, he'll be asked to provide relief and cover off the bench.
Ideally MacGinty would be the 1B to a Toby Flood or Owen Williams 1A, giving Sale a strong option off the bench to close out games whilst offering a solid stand off option when squad rotation is made necessary over the course of the season.
But regardless of the Sharks' future transfer dealings we shouldn't underestimate the capture of MacGinty; he might not quite match the star appeal of the departing Cipriani but he has an intriguing skillset which should fit in well with Paul Deacon's simplified, league-esque attacking system and with a bit of polishing could become yet another of Steve's Diamonds In The Rough™.
Although it was only an early season injury to Jack Carty which offered MacGinty the prominent role he has enjoyed with Connacht this season, 'Adge' has taken his chance superbly, guiding the province to a surprise run at the summit of this year's Pro 12 table and overseeing the competition's most lethal attack to boot.
Playing alongside a dynamic offensive arsenal which includes Bundee Aki, Matt Healy and Robbie Henshaw, MacGinty has shown himself to not only be a smart and efficient distributor that has kept the attacking options outside him consistently supplied with try-scoring opportunities, but also as a ten not afraid to attack the line himself, particularly useful considering his above average off-loading ability which further creates openings for his teammates. If Deacon can get him playing as flatly as Cipriani has this season for Sale, MacGinty should thrive as the main facilitator creating space for the likes of Will Addison, Sam James, and Josh Charnley to really make their mark on games.
And although he's not always been Connacht's first choice kicker this year, MacGinty's solid conversion rate of approximately 80% over the last year (both internationally and domestically) should bring some stability to what has been a tumultuous place-kicking experience for the Sharks in 2015/16.
In short, although MacGinty isn't the star name many have linked to Sale in the previous two months, he looks to be a solid and dependable player akin to a Gareth Steenson - someone who can play territory, hold his own in the defensive line and control the game for the attacking talent around him to capitalise on.
His potential may even extend further considering the superb season he's having in the Pro 12 despite only being a year removed from playing rugby semi-professional for a private university stateside; once firmly embedded in Paul Deacon and Steve Diamond's system and playing behind what looks to be a monstrous pack next season, MacGinty could rapidly turn into a star performer for the Sharks.
And even if Sale do eventually pen a deal with Rhys Priestland or Stephen Myler or whomever else, at worst MacGinty is a significant upgrade on the depth the Sharks currently have at fly-half.
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