Rugby

Confirmed: Joe Schmidt To Finish As Ireland Head Coach After World Cup

Confirmed: Joe Schmidt To Finish As Ireland Head Coach After World Cup

The IRFU has announced this morning that Joe Schmidt will finish as Ireland head coach after next year's Rugby World Cup in Japan.

It has also been announced that Andy Farrell, the current Ireland defence coach, will take over from Schmidt following the tournament.

The Irish Times's Gerry Thornley reported on Monday morning that Stuart Lancaster, currently with Leinster, is likely to be an attack coach in Farrell's backroom team.

"I have decided to finish coaching and will prioritise family commitments after the RWC in 2019," said Schmidt.

I feel that Irish rugby is in good hands. The management and players have been incredible to work with and the tremendous support we have had, particularly at home in the Aviva, but where ever we have travelled has been uplifting.

Thank you to the IRFU for their support and patience and thanks also to so many people who have adopted my family and me, making us feel part of the community here in Ireland.

There are some inspiring challenges over the next 11 months so there's plenty of motivation for me to continue working hard, alongside the other management staff, so that the team can be as competitive as possible.

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The New Zealander was first appointed as Ireland boss ahead of the 2013 November Internationals.

"In conversations with Joe you got a clear sense that this was a very tough decision for him knowing how much he enjoys working with this group of coaches and players but it is a decision that Joe, Kelly and the kids have made as a family and that is to be respected," said IRFU Performance Director, David Nucifora.

Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

See Also: New World Rugby Rankings Reflect A Changing Landscape Ahead Of The World Cup

PJ Browne
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