RFU intends to name Jones’ England successor ahead of 2023 World Cup

Rugby Football Union (RFU) chief Bill Sweeney has said he would prefer to appoint an England successor to head coach Eddie Jones.

Sweeney has thrown his support behind Jones, who is under pressure after successive disappointing Six Nations campaigns. Australian Jones has a contract with the RFU until the end of the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Sweeney’s intention to appoint local coaches as Jones’ successor would effectively rule out former Wales manager Warren Gatland or former South Africa manager Rassie Erasmus.

“We think we have such a wealth of English coaches in the game,” Sweeney told British media on Saturday. “As the leading rugby nation, we should be developing English coaches and an English style of play.

“It should be long term and so the preference would be to have an English setup as far as I’m concerned.”

Jones, who arrived in 2016 and was England’s first overseas appointment as head coach, led the side to three Six Nations titles and a World Cup final. rugby in Japan in 2019.

Sweeney said the RFU had “an advanced succession plan” in place.

“We have a war room that has every England manager you can imagine – based here and based internationally,” Sweeney said.

Conor O’Shea, the RFU’s director of performance rugby, says the governing body aims to name the successor before the summer of 2023.

“Whether it’s bringing them into the program or taking a helicopter view, that’s a discussion to be had. We’d like to think we’ll name them before 2023,” O’Shea added.

The British media have also linked Steve Borthwick, Rob Baxter and Richard Cockerill with the role of England head coach.

(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru; Editing by Christopher Cushing)