‘Negotiations have started’ between Julian Alaphilippe and TotalEnergies

Frenchman expected to leave Soudal Quick-Step with home team keen to secure his signature

Clock13:57, Friday 19th April 2024
Julian Alaphilippe could fill the gap left by Peter Sagan at TotalEnergies

© Getty Images

Julian Alaphilippe could fill the gap left by Peter Sagan at TotalEnergies

Out of contract with Soudal-Quick Step at the end of this year, Julian Alaphilippe has reportedly begun negotiations with TotalEnergies around securing his services for the coming seasons.

The French team have long appeared to be the likely candidate to sign Alaphilippe, having made their interest clear as early as last summer, but the process looks to be moving ahead properly now.

Speaking to Ouest-France, TotalEnergies team boss Jean-René Bernaudeau confirmed that the contract conversation had begun.

“Negotiations have started,” Bernaudeau said.

“We met with him and Benoît Genauzeau [TotalEnergies sports director] last week. We’re doing our job, we are discussing with him, as with others, in order to move our project forward. Today, we are where we should be, but to continue we must present our plans.”

As well as being a big French star who would be a big signing for the domestic ProTeam, Bernaudeau praised the qualities the former world champion would bring to the squad.

“I like his state of mind, his desire. He doesn't make noise, works a lot,” Bernaudeau added. “He is disappointed to have had this fibula injury which did not allow him to express himself as he would have wanted during the start of the season.”

Read more: Julian Alaphilippe raced Spring Classics campaign with fracture, fearing criticism

Alaphilippe could also be a similar replacement for Peter Sagan, who left TotalEnergies at the end of 2023 and left the team without a key talisman. Bernaudeau did confirm that the team is also talking to other riders as they look to build their next roster.

Whilst his next team may not be confirmed, and won’t be made official before 1 August, it seems certain that Alaphilippe will not renew with Soudal Quick-Step, with retirement also an option he alluded to earlier this year.

As his results have waned in the last few seasons for several reasons, and the team move more towards Grand Tour ambitions with Remco Evenepoel, the Frenchman’s relationship with the team and team boss Patrick Lefevere has become strained.

Lefevere has been loudly and publicly critical of his once-star rider, even commenting on his partner Marion Rousse.

Read more: Marion Rousse rejects Patrick Lefevere’s criticism of Julian Alaphilippe

Most recently, Alaphilippe revealed how he rode much of the spring Classics with a fracture in his fibula, not wishing to speak out about his injury publicly for fear of criticism.

At a French team like TotalEnergies – he has never ridden for a French team as a professional – Alaphilippe may find a more fitting home as he approaches the final phase of his career.

For the latest news, interviews and analysis from the world of professional cycling, be sure to check out the Racing tab on the GCN website and visit our essential guide to the Spring Classics to stay up to date with all of the action from cycling's most exciting season.

Related Content

Link to 5 unmissable stages of the 2024 Tour de France
The fearsome Col du Galibier appears shockingly early in the 2024 Tour de France

5 unmissable stages of the 2024 Tour de France

Mountains, gravel, and final-day drama: Here's our pick of the most promising stages of the upcoming Tour de France

Clock
Link to Analysing Visma-Lease a Bike’s Tour de France long list
Jonas Vingegaard and his then Jumbo-Visma teammates have been triumphant at the Tour de France for the past two years

Analysing Visma-Lease a Bike’s Tour de France long list

With Jonas Vingegaard on the comeback trail and Sepp Kuss suffering from illness, the team still has plenty of question marks looming before July

Clock
Link to Should Tadej Pogačar be worried by Remco Evenepoel and Primož Roglič at the Tour de France? - GCN Racing News Show
YouTube video undefined

Should Tadej Pogačar be worried by Remco Evenepoel and Primož Roglič at the Tour de France? - GCN Racing News Show

The Critérium du Dauphiné came to a conclusion at the weekend with Roglič as the winner, but Dan Lloyd can't see him winning the Tour, here's why

Clock
Link to Adam Yates using Tour de Suisse as final test before Tour de France
Adam Yates (UAE Team Emirates)

Adam Yates using Tour de Suisse as final test before Tour de France

British rider will back up Tadej Pogačar later this month but Suisse offers the chance to test his form and fitness

Clock
Subscribe to the GCN Newsletter

Get the latest, most entertaining and best informed news, reviews, challenges, insights, analysis, competitions and offers - straight to your inbox