‘Mallinder and McGeechan should coach England’

Wales coach Shaun Edwards wants England to appoint experienced duo Jim Mallinder and Ian McGeechan

martin johnson
Johnson stepped down as England coach on Wednesday PA Photos

martin johnson

Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards believes England should look to replace former head coach Martin Johnson with Jim Mallinder and Ian McGeechan.

The former Wasps coach wants the RFU to appoint the pair instead of looking to potential southern hemisphere candidates such as Nick Mallett, Jack White and Eddie Jones.

Edwards suggested Mallinder be handed the head coach position, while McGeechan could work above him in a managerial role.

“We should go for the best of the guys currently coaching up here ““ say Mallinder ““ but put him alongside someone of unparalleled experience ““ say Ian McGeechan, five times a Lions coach, Heineken Cup winner with Wasps, and coach of the grand slam Scots,” Edwards told the Guardian.

“My guess is that they’d develop as a partnership and develop England’s young team at the same time.”

He added: “The mindset seems to be that if you come from Australia, South Africa or New Zealand that’s enough of a CV.

“Kirwan, who was a fine player, only coached up here with Italy. When Jones left Saracens they were about seventh in the Premiership.

“True [Mallett] once led South Africa to 17 consecutive wins, but the last of those was in 1998. I can’t accept that because someone comes from the southern hemisphere they have an advantage.”

On Wednesday, former Lions coach McGeechan expressed his disappointment at Johnson’s decision to quit his post and suggested others were to blame for England’s failures at the World Cup.

“Johnno’s such an honest person,” said McGeechan. “Obviously, he’ll feel he’s taken responsibility for the performance and the things that happened but I think there are a few more people who have got to look much harder at themselves about what happened.

“Reading between the lines, I think that he’s probably put a lot of himself in there and not necessarily got the same back. From some.

“I’m very disappointed. For me, Martin was one of the strong personalities who could be building England and taking the game forward. I think it’s a great shame that it’s not going to happen.”

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