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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

2003 RWC winner Martin Johnson resigns as England rugby coach

Martin Johnson has resigned as coach of England. The former World Cup winning captain had little success in New Zealand this year, with his players not only under performing, but also embarrassing themselves off the field. Who will be his successor?

There's a few names being thrown into the pot but opinions vary quite substantially. Obviously some names seem obvious candidates, but who should coach England and who can coach England might be two very different things, as availability and willingness need to be factored in.

You'd think the RFU would want to look at homegrown talent first, but finding a foreign coach is a strong possibility. According to bookies Paddy Power, Northampton Saints coach Jim Mallinder is favourite, at 7/4.

"Mallinder’s recent successes with Northampton see him widely touted for the top job, and he also boasts some England pedigree with a coaching stint with the Saxons and Under 21s to his name.

"World Cup winner Graham Henry is second favourite at 4/1 just ahead of Nick Mallet, who has expressed an interest in the job, at 6/1. Ex-Ireland full back Conor O’Shea is considered a bit of a dark horse at 12/1. O’Shea is an ex Director of Regional Academies with the RFU and is now Director of Rugby at Harlequins," Paddy Power said in a statement earlier today.

The full list of coaches tipped to be in line for the postition is as follows:

7/4 Jim Mallinder, 4/1 Graham Henry, 6/1 Nick Mallet, 8/1 John Kirwin, 12/1 Conor O’Shea, 20/1 Eddie Jones, 20/1 Dean Richards, 20/1 Richard Baxter, 20/1 Clive Woodward, 20/1 Wayne Smith, 25/1 Toby Booth, 25/1 Ewan MacKenzie, 25/1 Brendan Venter, 33/1 Jake White, 33/1 Ian McGeechan, 33/1 Todd Blackadder, 33/1 Neil Back, 33/1 Steve Hansen, 50/1 Dean Ryan, 100/1 Eddie O’Sullivan

Posted at 3:35 pm | 24 comments

Viewing 24 comments

MacKurdi November 16, 2011 5:34 pm

I believe Graham Henry is favorite

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Just Call Me Ehtch November 17, 2011 6:56 am

Brendan Venter could be an interesting choice. If England Rugby want to change, he would be a good choice - he is chalk and cheese to the RFU, you could say...

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Just Call Me Ehtch November 17, 2011 7:36 pm

But saying that, no overseas coaches would touch the RFU with a barge pole. They are diseased, in their minds. Not in touch with things, today. Good luck Twickers.

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Matthew November 16, 2011 6:14 pm

Sad to see him go and now seriously worried that we might lose to England some of our coaching staff at Saints.

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19andrew92 November 16, 2011 7:12 pm

graham henry may be the favorite but id hate to see the job go to annyone other than nick mallet.
i think he is exactually what england need, a coach who will develop new players and start afresh.

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johndoe November 16, 2011 7:37 pm

This is all well and good, but the bigger problem is the entire RFU... Something needs to be done about these idiots squandering the biggest pool of rugby players in the world and mishandling the most minor of issues that arise with their senior players.

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Disco November 16, 2011 7:40 pm

That's a pretty nice thing to leave English rugby: beer. He was a one man band in the RFU and the only man who focussed his mind on rugby. I think he has a point; the pressure on players is enough without them being barred from doing what their mates are doing. There's no reason why Johnson won't go on to be a great coach in my opinion; he read the game as well as any of the great back rows and did so from second row. A man mountain and a force in rugby, it will be interesting to see where he goes. Bali probably.

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Pretzel November 16, 2011 8:39 pm

I think it's a shame Johnson has gone. I think he was heading on the right tracks.... Graham Henry might produce a winning streak... but we shall see..

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WelshOsprey November 16, 2011 10:25 pm

Still dont understand why they got rid of brian ashton, he got england to a world cup final.

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Colombes November 16, 2011 10:56 pm

a pretty logical news as RFU has done anything to publicly discredit Johnson by creating a comission to review the off pitch events of the rwc and "banning" tindall of the selection.
personnaly, i think it's a big mistake, johnno knew his players, now the new coach will have all to rebuild, england didn't need that.
but, Mallett would be the most adequat person to the job, but i'm pretty sure that the RFU will prefer Mallinder, more "english" and closed to foden, ashton, hartley and lawes....

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flyingpepper November 17, 2011 1:45 am

English rugby is a joke at the moment, must point out I am English before people start anything. The RFU are still without a Chairman, there is no captain as Moody has retired and Tindall was booted out for no good reason. And now we don't have a head coach. We are starting completely from scratch, which the optimists will say is great, but the reality is there are now so many opportunities for mistakes/problems. Three new important people will be selected in English rugby, three points of view, relationships, all at the moment are unknowns. If Johnson had stayed and Woodward had been persuaded to return its would start to look good and they already have a strong relationship from the past. I did like Jeremy Guscots idea of trying to get Darren Lockyer in as one of the assistant coaches.

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flyingpepper November 17, 2011 2:31 am

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_union/15766972.stm

This is a link to his leaving interview. Interesting that Rob Andrews sits there saying Martin did a good job, so maybe he wouldn't have been sacked. So he didn't want to stay which say alot about the state of English rugby. Then the joke is two of the coaches that the RFU are considering have ruled themselves out. The Northampton coach is tied up in a contract and I doubt Henry would want to leave the All Black for England. So we have lost a coach with really no great coaches in mind. And whilst England RFU have been arguing like little girls point finger Edwards has resigned with Wales. If the way we played in the world cup was disappointing, then the way the RFU is acting completely over shadows it.

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Pretzel November 17, 2011 4:13 pm

I actually thought Henry was looking for a European rugby job wasn't he?!?! I'm sure he said something like that, but it was the AB's that were trying to persuade him to stay...

Ofcourse European doesn't exactly=England...

I agree that Johnson shouldn't have left, even if he is not the top choice he still provides some stability for the team. I actually think England was become more successful under him and the world cup campaign was just a disappointment which came through a lack of discipline and a relatively young side. (i.e. nothing that can't be rectified)

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i love bacon November 17, 2011 4:14 am

I love it when English rugby constantly gets in the way of itself. They really have the ability - both in the talents of current players, and the talent in the extremely large pool of players below that - to be right up there with the best in the world. But they always seem to shoot themselves in the foot.

They had it alright with Johnson. He wasn't great. But he wasn't awful. And he was getting better. As was the English squad, for the most part. Maybe a new coach can help speed that along, but maybe it won't. Who knows. The only thing that's certain is the RFU will keep fumbling over itself, so just grab a cold beer and take in the comedy that is international English rugby.

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flyingpepper November 17, 2011 4:27 am

That's so true, the whole situation is my worse by the fact that we should be this bad. We might not end up being the best in the world but we have the resources to be better than we are.

I think the only decision the RFU has ever made is to look down at their feet and decide which one to shoot

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Just Call Me Ehtch November 17, 2011 6:49 am

It was madness for him to be stuck right into the deep end as national coach in the first place, without earning his managerial spurs elsewhere first. Many predicted it would end in tears. And with these off and on field dramas every other week by his players, I don't think he ever had the dressing room.

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flyingpepper November 17, 2011 10:58 am

MJ was the first coach to win the six nations, win at cardif and dublin and beat Australia away since Woodward. Yet we have let him go, but can you blame him after the way the RFU treated Tindall. Everyone went on about other coaches before MJ was appointed and similar names are coming up now. Yet two of the top four coaches have already ruled themselves out, the northampton coach is tied up in a contract and I doubt henry would want to come to england after the all black. The truth is if we found it hard to secure a top coach before then now it will be close to impossible. No RFU chairman, No captain (only one player in the current squad I think is a captain at club level) who would want to come and be part of that mess.

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Just Call Me Ehtch November 17, 2011 12:05 pm

So, fyingpepper, any top World rugger coach won't touch the RFU with a shitty stick? If so, as a welshman, you have made my day. Cheers greatly. I feel as if I want to burst into song - resist it Shuggy, resist it, keep it for later...

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flyingpepper November 19, 2011 1:25 am

fwell free to burst into song, the welsh rugby support have something to be proud of. But i do think it is thecase, rugby directors keep referring to it as a business not a sport, so if the English RFU are a business, then would anyone want to work for them, don't think so. they couldn't organise a piss-up in abrewery at the moment

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patedelievre November 18, 2011 8:35 pm

SHAME on the RFU. Jonno was excellent, tuilagi deserved WAy more than he got and Tindall WAY less. but then again, perfect victim, old and stuff so they can afford to lose him and pretend to have authority, blame him while they're the real culprits...
why is it the same in any federation? the French federation makes soooo bad choices, the italians fired Mallet who was getting results for what? Brunel won't last: he'll get bored and go back to Top 14 before u can spell his name right. especially when u see what's going on with Perpignan this year...

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Pretzel November 19, 2011 12:12 am

Did the Italians fire mallet or just not renew his contract? or is that just splitting hairs?!?

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