John Mitchell: England defence coach role for ex-All Blacks boss

John Mitchell has been coaching the Blue Bulls in South Africa

John Mitchell has been appointed as England's new defence coach.

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has reached a compensation agreement with South African province Blue Bulls after lengthy negotiations.

The RFU is believed to be paying around £200,000 to recruit the former All Blacks head coach.

Mitchell coached England's forwards under Sir Clive Woodward at the end of the 1990s, and the Kiwi also held roles at Wasps, Sale and the USA.

Scott Wisemantel will continue his role as attack coach this autumn, after working with England on the tour of South Africa.

The 48-year-old Australian was recently backs coach for Top 14 club Montpellier and was involved with Eddie Jones's Japan at the 2015 World Cup.

England boss Jones is believed to have held informal discussions with the Ireland defence coach Andy Farrell, before turning his focus to Mitchell.

Mitchell, 54, will leave his role as executive of rugby at the Bulls and link up with England this month ahead of the November internationals.

"I will use all my experience and focus to bring the necessary clarity and confidence to the players from a defensive perspective," said Mitchell.

Jones' previous defence guru Paul Gustard left the set-up following the summer tour of South Africa to take over at Harlequins.

Jones suggested earlier this month Mitchell would be tasked with improving England's ability to turn defence into attack.

"There's an opportunity now to develop a different sort of defence, particularly we need to get better in the transition area," he told BBC Sport. "So we are looking for a person who can help fix us in that area."

Source: BBC Rugby Union News

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By adamreeves / Administrator, bbp_keymaster on Sep 18, 2018