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What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

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    What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

    I am going out for a drink in Bath tomorrow night and need some expert opinion to quote verbatim

    "Johnson named as England supremo
    Martin Johnson has been appointed England team manager from 1 July to the end of 2011 in a shake-up that sees Brian Ashton removed as head coach.

    The World Cup-winning captain, 38, will have full control of team selection and the appointment of the coaching team.

    But with his wife Kay expecting their second child, Johnson will not travel to New Zealand for the tour in June.

    Elite rugby director Rob Andrew will lead the trip as manager with coaches John Wells and Mike Ford retained.

    Ashton has been offered the post of head coach at the Rugby Football Union's National Academy, a role he has performed previously, but has yet to decide whether to accept the role.

    I would like to thank Brian for the job he has done in difficult circumstances. He is an outstanding coach
    Rob Andrew

    It brings an end to his 16-month reign as head coach, in which he guided England to the 2007 World Cup final and second place in this year's Six Nations, their best finish since 2003.
    Johnson will report to Andrew, but have "full managerial control" of the England team. He will appoint an additional coach, expected to be a backs specialist, in due course.

    "I am passionate about the England team and delivering success for it," the former lock forward said in a statement.

    "While I cannot take up my position until 1 July for personal reasons I will be working closely with Rob and the England coaching team on selection for the Barbarians match and the New Zealand tour, as well as selecting the first senior elite player squad of 32 under the new agreement between the RFU and Premier Rugby."

    Andrew will take over Johnson's duties for the 1 June Twickenham date with the Barbarians, and the two-Test tour of New Zealand which follows.

    As well as forwards coach Wells and defence coach Ford, the coaching team will also include scrummaging expert Graham Rowntree and kicking coach Jon Callard.

    Andrew believes Johnson will bring "a new and fresh approach to team development and preparation in his own inimitable style".

    Andrew met Ashton at Twickenham on Tuesday to tell him he was losing his job as head coach, just four months after recommending that the Lancastrian stay on in the job "indefinitely".

    On Wednesday he thanked Ashton "for the job he has done in difficult circumstances", praising him as an "outstanding coach" who "deserves enormous credit" for his achievements with England.

    "Whilst Brian is naturally disappointed that he will not have a role in the new senior structure, I believe the new post that we have offered him as Head Coach of the National Academy is ideally suited to his special talents and expertise," Andrew added.
    Ashton returned to the England set-up as attack coach in May 2006, before succeeding Andy Robinson as head coach in January 2007. He won 12 of his 22 Tests in charge, losing 10.

    Robinson, who was dismissed in December 2006 after a run of eight defeats in nine Tests, says Johnson will not just have to manage his coaches and players, but forge a strong relationship with the RFU hierarchy.

    "You have got to be able to manage the people above you," Robinson told BBC Radio 5 Live.

    Brian Ashton still has much to offer England rugby
    RFU chief executive Francis Baron

    "I think the management board need to take a hard look at themselves and how they conduct themselves.
    "You want everybody to be on the same page, and that is not necessarily the case."

    Johnson, Andrew and RFU chief executive Francis Baron will outline further details of Johnson's role in a media conference on Friday.

    But Baron said Johnson would benefit from the RFU's huge financial resources as he seeks to restore England to the status they enjoyed under his captaincy.

    "Martin has the freedom and the budget to recruit additional coaching resource and make other changes to the England set-up to build a team that will consistently challenge for the major international tournaments," Baron said.

    "I am also personally pleased that Brian (Ashton) has been offered a senior post within the RFU which I very much hope he accepts. He still has much to offer England rugby."

    What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

    It's mentioned on the Lions thread.

    He's not the "coach" though, is he?


      What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

      Ashton has been treated very poorly by the RFU. In fact I can't think of anyone in any sport who has been treated so shoddily.
      These old farts could give the WRU a run for their money.


        What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

        Total fucking shambles. The RFU seem to be investing in the power and the glory of the Leicester crew (Johnson, Wells, Rowntree) at a time when Wasps represent the most forward-thinking rugby philosophy in the country. If they could convince Pat Howard to come in as attack coach then I might be impressed, but we'll probably end up with fucking Healey.


          What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

          Rowntree I can live with. But Wells can fuck off. As forwards coach he's presided over some bloody appalling pack performances. One thing England could always rely upon was that the pack would give as good as it got and often better, even if the backs weren't up to scratch. Under Wells, we've seen this sort of performance followed immediately by some real powder puff rubbish in the next one. He's not a patch on his predecessor, Andy Robinson, as a forwards coach (even if Robinson was a terrible head coach).

          Ashton has been treated badly by the RFU who should have been more decisive in either backing or sacking him, but really, he has been an awful head coach. He should have been shown the door after either the World Cup (a player revolt to force a change and a couple of lucky games dominated by the beasts until they met an opposition pack that actually turned up, at which point we were stuffed) or the 6N (in which we may have finished second, but this as much to do with Ireland being incompetent in the extreme - our best performance was against the worst Irish display I've seen in many a moon - and the French playing Jekyll and Hyde to a degree that makes even their usual standards seem consistency personified). True, he's blooded new players, but only after his hand had been forced in many cases. Add to this the Vainikolo fiasco (if he is ever ready for international rugby I'll eat my hat) and the jaw-dropping comparisons of Balshaw to Cullen and Robinson, followed by blind loyalty to a player who can't even start at full back for his club side in the face of all evidence to the contrary, the ditching of Tait for plodders like Tindall and Noon, combined with the fact that he fundamentally disagreed with the rest of his coaching staff, meant that in my eyes he's been a disaster. I believe he holds the record defeat as coach for England against Ireland and Ireland against England. He failed twice on the international scene and has never been anything more than a good attack coach (ditched by Woodward for a more pragmatic but ultimately winning style) and a good Acadmey coach.

          Who now joins Johnson? I have no idea. But I would get rid of all the coaching staff and bring in a fresh slate. Especially Jon "I've no idea how the SH players kick it so far" Callard. But we seem to swing from a Bath cabal to a Leicester cabal at times with England.

          Just keep your bloody hands off Richards. And can we have a new 10 as we'll miss AJ next season? And Mike Brown for England full back, Danny Care for England scrum half.


            What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

            It's mentioned on the Lions thread.
            He's not the "coach" though, is he?
            "Team Manager" didn't fit in the thread title, I tried.


              What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?



                What? No "Martin Johnson is England coach" thread?

                Where were you when I was writing this thread title, Lynne Truss?