George scored a try in Saracens Premiership final over Exeter in June, their fourth domestic title in five years

England hooker Jamie George plans to stay at Saracens next season despite the club being relegated to the Championship for salary cap breaches.

“I’m staying at Saracens, I need to be playing rugby next year so I’m not sure about the details,” he told BBC Sport.

“That’s the 20% we need to work out and those conversations will be had over the next few weeks.”

Saracens team-mates Owen Farrell, Maro Itoje and Billy and Mako Vunipola are yet to reveal their club futures.

Elliot Daly, George Kruis, Jack Singleton and Ben Spencer completed a nine-strong Saracens contingent to represent England at last year’s Rugby World Cup in Japan.

George started all three British and Irish Lions’ Tests in New Zealand in 2017 and Saracens head coach Mark McCall believes that a season in the Championship may actually improve his stars’ chances of being selected for the 2021 tour of South Africa.

“They are at that stage where they have been on this treadmill for 10 years and they are seeing it as a positive where next year can be one where they are freshened up, physically recover and get better,” he said.

“Play enough rugby and go on a Lions tour fresh at the end of it, which is not normal.”

‘It wasn’t ideal to be honest’

Itoje, like George, has been with Saracens for his entire career

Mako Vunipola and Itoje were both named in newspaper reports as players whose business ventures with Saracens owner Nigel Wray fell foul of rules restricting spending on players.

“It wasn’t ideal to be honest,” Itoje told BBC Sport.

“It felt like an invasion of privacy and I’m quite a private person, so when it comes to that kind of thing it’s not exactly my ideal situation.”

He added that he had no idea any of his payments were not above board: “When everything was negotiated there was no doubt.

“It was put clearly to me that everything was above board. Obviously these are people I trust and I don’t think they gave me that advice knowing it wasn’t allowed or wasn’t to be. I think everyone genuinely believed this was all OK.

“It’s a learning lesson for the club and I know the club are now putting steps in place to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”

Prop Mako Vunipola has said his club situation remains unclear but he does not feel responsible for what’s happened at Saracens.

“I feel sadness, but in terms of responsibility I wouldn’t say I do,” he said.

“As rugby players we only have a short career and we have to look further forward a lot quicker than most people, so that was my planning and thinking behind what’s happened and unfortunately it’s turned out this way.”

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