MATEO CARRERAS will leave Newcastle Falcons at the end of the season to join French Top-14 club Bayonne.

The Argentinian winger has scored 16 tries in 37 appearances during his three years on Tyneside, and will remain with Falcons for the remainder of the current campaign despite having agreed to a future move across the Channel.

“Mateo is an outstanding talent who has naturally attracted significant interest on the back of his performances for Newcastle and Argentina,” said Falcons head coach Alex Codling. “He arrived here as a talented young man who had played hardly any professional 15-a-side rugby, and he will leave as one of the best wingers in the world.

“That is due to his own ability and hard work as well as the guidance and support he has received at the club, and we will wish him well when he departs in the summer.

“We are naturally disappointed to be losing such a fantastic player and we will always do our best to retain our top talent, but Mateo has been professional and transparent throughout the entire process.

“He still has a massive role to play for the Falcons between now and the end of the season, and I know he will approach it with his usual diligence and positivity.”

Carreras has made 17 senior international appearances for Argentina, and scored three tries as Los Pumas made it to the semi-finals of the recent Rugby World Cup, losing to New Zealand in the semi-finals and England in the third-placed play-off.

He scored 13 tries in the Premiership last season, making him the English top-flight’s second-highest try scorer behind Harlequins’ Cadan Murley.

“I want to thank Newcastle Falcons and the club’s supporters for welcoming me to North-East England and making my stay here so enjoyable,” said Carreras. “Newcastle has been my home for three years and I will really miss the place and the people when I move on in the summer.

“The Falcons have played a massive part in my rugby journey and I'm looking forward to giving my all during the time I have left here.

“My only focus is on being the best player and team-mate I can be between now and the end of this season, and I really appreciate the backing from all our supporters.”

Falcons currently sit at the foot of the Gallagher Premiership table, having lost all of their opening five matches this season. They return to action when they head to second-placed Sale Sharks on Friday evening.