Sam Burgess can make an impact in union, says Andy Farrell

Sam Burgess

England rugby union assistant coach Andy Farrell believes "warrior" Sam Burgess can make a successful cross-code switch.

England league international Burgess, 25, is in talks with union side Bath.

"Sam can make an impact," said Farrell, who denies approaching Burgess over a potential move to union during last year's rugby league World Cup.

"He's certainly a fighter and a warrior. He's very similar to the likes of Billy Twelvetrees and Manu Tuilagi."

Burgess currently plays for Australian side South Sydney Rabbitohs, where he is contracted until 2016, but it is understood the Rugby Football Union (RFU) are willing to buy out his remaining two years.

It has been reported that Burgess would be signed with a view to playing in the 2015 World Cup.

However Farrell, himself a rugby league convert, believes that would be difficult.

"It's a tough ask, but some people can take to things more quickly than others," he added.

"Mentality-wise you're trying to get ready for a battle, especially at international level, but the game does take some time to get used to as far as instinct is concerned.

"I'm not saying that somebody of the calibre of player we are talking about couldn't."

Burgess moved down under in 2009 but came back to prominence in his homeland during the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, putting in a number of aggressive performances as England reached the semi-finals.

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