Caretaker coach for England

England will have a caretaker coach for the RBS 6 Nations. [more]

Caretaker coach for England

England will have a caretaker coach for the RBS 6 Nations.

The Rugby Football Union plan to have a permanent coach in place before the summer tour of South Africa.

That appointment will not be made until after a new chief executive is appointed by the turn of the year, with the CEO given the task of overseeing the search for Martin Johnson’s successor.

"I am sure that everybody shares a real determination that we should recruit the very best man for the head coach's job, we should take the time needed to do that, and that the support structures around that person and the squad are world class," said Ian Metcalfe, chairman of the RFU's Professional Game Board.

The RFU have also confirmed that underfire operations director Rob Andrew will be formally appointed as professional rugby director.

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The former Lions fly-half will not have responsibility for the England senior side but he will look after all professional rugby department operations, including agreements with the Premiership clubs, tournaments and competitions and England representative teams.

"One of the ways we failed Rob is not explaining the breadth of what he is trying to do," added Metcalfe, who was keen to stress that Andrew’s fourth job title in as many years is not a demotion.

"He has a significant contribution to continue to make."

Following heavy criticism and near continuous controversy before, during and after the recent World Cup, the RFU also plan to alter the support structures surrounding the England team (in the mould of New Zealand’s Darren Shand and Wales’ Alan Phillips) with a senior team manager likely to be appointed to handle all non-playing matters.

Among the other recommendations announced by the RFU are stricter parameters over the presence of agents in the international camp; the creation of a leadership group of players with a cross-section of age and experience; an independent review of the Elite Rugby Department; a full and co-ordinated schedule of visits to Premiership clubs by the national coaching group; a full review of senior England team medical and sports science processes and protocols; and improved communication between the players, the Rugby Players’ Association and the RFU commercial department on planned commercial activities.

"We underperformed at the World Cup and there were events throughout the tournament that were not acceptable. We are determined to address the cause of those issues and will ensure that they are not repeated," said acting chief executive Stephen Brown.

"We believe that the actions approved will in the long term help the England team and elite rugby in this country move forward to where we all want it to be."

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