Ronan O'Gara surprised many when he upped sticks and took off for France to accept a coaching role at Racing Metro, following Jonny Sexton who has since returned to Leinster.
He was of course commended for leaving his comfort zone and getting stuck into coaching, but many wondered how he would manage in Paris with a group of players from many different backgrounds and languages. He's taken his coaching lessons, and the general opinion amongst Racing players is that he's a great guy, but Bernard Le Roux has revealed that he is not immune to taking a bit of stick in the players' Whatsapp group:
We got this Whatsapp group at Racing where we all post pictures.
The other day someone posted a picture of someone running over Ronan O'Gara saying 'That's our defensive coach!' and straight after Alex Dumoulin posted a video of all Ronan's highlights of his career with - 'Just shut up, mate.'
The point here is that he's even got other players arguing his case for him, a true sign of endearment. If that wasn't enough, Le Roux continued to heap praise on O'Gara and explain why he thinks he has a big future in coaching:
Ronan is a brilliant coach with all his experience. He's such a brilliant lad as well. He makes a lot of fun around the team, his whole vibe, he lights up the team with his personality.
Coaching-wise for the kickers and the backs it's brilliant the way he sees the game. He sees things the way no other people see it. He tries things no other teams would. He's got an awesome vision for the game. I think he will go far.
High praise indeed. Hopefully we will see Ronan coaching in Ireland in the near future, and it's worth remembering his comments on the idea of working at Leinster while we're on the subject.