The RFU have held a press conference at Twickenham this afternoon, and whilst there weren’t any headline announcements or sackings, some of the next steps are interesting.
Here is the RFU’s summary, interspersed with a few of our own thoughts.
England should appoint a Head Coach with the appropriate experience and track record in time for the tour of South Africa in June 2012
This rules out Jim Mallinder I would think, and it sounds like they are going after Nick Mallett.
An interim Head Coach should be appointed to prepare England for the 2012 RBS 6 Nations
There was no announcement, so perhaps it isn’t Stuart Lancaster after all, and perhaps Brian Ashton is still deciding. ‘As soon as possible’ was the recommended timescale, given that the revised EPS needs to be named on 11th January.
The interim and permanent England Head Coach will report to the Chief Executive and the Board of Directors
The new CEO will be heavily involved in the appointment of a coach, apparently, and will take responsibility – unlike Rob Andrew in the wake of the Rugby World Cup.
The support structures around the senior England team will be re-evaluated, including the appointment of a Senior England Team Manager to handle all non-playing responsibilities of the team
Additional support structures to be implemented will include:
– Stricter parameters over the presence of agents in international camp
– Consideration of security resources on tour
– A leadership group of players with a cross-section of age and experience
An independent review of the RFU’s Elite Rugby Department
Rob Andrew will formally be appointed to the role of RFU Professional Rugby Director with responsibilities for all Professional Rugby Department operations, including the relationship with Premiership Rugby, Tournaments and Competitions and England representative teams except the senior side
Rob Andrew has lost the ‘20%’ of his job at which he failed so spectacularly. But he’s not resigning…
A full and co-ordinated schedule of visits to Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs by the national coaching group
A full review of senior England team medical and sports science processes and protocols
The RFU will make players fully aware of the importance of adhering to core values when representing England
The RFU will improve communication between the players, the RPA and the RFU commercial department on planned commercial activities
The RFU will create a stable and trusted management structure for the governance of the RFU itself and to support the senior England team
The press conference actually started with an apology on behalf of the RFU, and it did seem to dawn on them that they had spectacularly messed things up. RFU Acting Chief Executive, Stephen Brown, said, “‘I didn’t expecting to be sitting here at a press conference just one day in the job, but this is important.”
PGB Chaiman Ian Metcalfe also said, “We mustn’t get wrapped up in finding the leaker rather than addressing the problems” which suggests they’ve got their priorities in order – although the investigation is still underway to find that leaker.
Is this the start of positive change at the RFU?