Scotland international centre Sam Johnson will leave Glasgow Warriors this summer, bringing to an end his eight-year association with the Scotstoun outfit during which time he has made 104 appearances.

He was one of six players named when Warriors issued a final list of departees yesterday morning, with fellow Scotland cap Simon Berghan also on his way out.

It had already been announced that former club captain Ryan Wilson is moving on, while head coach Franco Smith confirmed two weeks ago that Lewis Bean and Cole Forbes would not be returning next season.

Finally, Cameron Neild, who joined the club in November on a short-term deal to the end of this season, has not had his deal extended.

While it has been reported that second-row Bean will join Montauban in French rugby’s Pro D2 (second-tier) next season, it is not clear where any of the other leavers are headed.

Speaking at the end of last month, Smith indicated that all of this summer’s departees are doing so of their volition.

“Nobody here is being let go,” he said. “Everybody has a choice. I don’t want to go into it too much, but it’s sad to lose them. It wasn’t the intent of the club to lose them at all, but the players also have a choice.”

The departure of Johnson is certainly the biggest eye-brow raiser. At 29, he should still have a few good years left in his playing career and the no-nonsense, hard-running centre is bound to attract suitors in Europe or back in his native Australia.

Johnson joined Warriors in 2015, having played two games for Queensland Reds after returning from a stint in Rugby League straight after school. He went on be named Player’s Player of the Season at the club’s 2017-18 awards dinner and made his Scotland debut – having qualified through the three-year residency rule – in the national team’s 2019 Six Nations opener against Italy.

After scoring a spectacular 40-yard try in Scotland’s dramatic draw with England at Twickenham that year, he was a member of the World Cup squad in Japan and has collected 26 caps, although he has not played since the 2022 Six Nations and was not in the 41-strong training squad for this year’s World Cup which was announced on Tuesday.

With a combination from Sione Tuipulotu, Huw Jones and Stafford McDowall expected to populate the Warriors midfield during next Friday’s Challenge Cup final clash against Toulon in Dublin, it looks like Johnson – who was recently voted Warrior of the Month for March by fans – will not have an opportunity to bid farewell to the club’s supporters on the field of play.

His and Forbes’ departure leaves Warriors with a distinctly short of depth midfield and back three, so fans will be hoping to hear news of a few new signings soon.

The only new recruit for next season announced so far is South African back-row Henco Venter, while academy prospects such as Duncan Munn, Ben Salmon (both centres) Logan Jarvie, Ross McKnight (both wingers) and Christian Townsend (stand-off/centre/full-back) are untested at senior pro level.

Berghan also has international pedigree and has played regularly this season – he has been involved in 19 out of a possible 26 matches – but with Zander Fagerson, Murphy Walker, Lucio Sordoni and Enrique Pieretto all on the books, Warriors are well stocked at tight-head prop.

“Thank you to Ryan, Sam, Lewis, Cole, Simon and Cameron for their contributions to the club this season, I am grateful for their hard work, and wish them all the very best in their new challenges,” said Smith in the club statement announcing the departures.

“After a season like this, it is difficult to say goodbye to players that bought in and contributed the way they did. They have all played a valuable part in helping us to reach the league quarter-finals, and will keep doing so as we continue preparations for our first ever European final.

“I sincerely thank these players for their commitment to the Glasgow Warriors team and the club’s values.”

Warriors have this weekend off before shooting for glory in the Challenge Cup a week tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the outcome of Tom Jordan’s disciplinary hearing, following his red card for a high tackle against Munster last weekend, will be announced this morning. It is likely that stand-off will be suspended for the Toulon match.