Rugby Union


Dean Richards reacts to suggestion that he could replace Eddie Jones as England boss

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Football News

As his Newcastle side stand on the verge of a potential Premiership final appearance next weekend, Falcons' Director of Rugby Dean Richards has ridiculed suggestions that he could be the man to replace current England boss Eddie Jones.

Speaking ahead of his side's play-off with Exeter on Saturday afternoon, Richards emphatically dismissed rumours that he might take the role.

"When someone suggested it, I laughed. I've no interest in it at all. I just don't fancy it," said Richards, per Daily Mail.

The 54-year-old insisted that the differential between the skill set required for the England job and those of his current role were vast - and that he saw himself as being far from the ideal candidate.

"It's totally different to being a club director of rugby. You have to do a lot of the politics behind it - that's not my forte. I'm a little bit blunt, a little bit straight-talking and not one for politics at all. I would almost certainly fall foul in the first week."

Richards, capped 48 times for England as a player, has overseen a considerable transformation of fortunes for Newcastle since his arrival in 2012, following a ban from coaching for his involvement in the "bloodgate" scandal in 2009 - where one of his Harlequins players faked a blood injury to enable a tactical substitution.

Having been promoted from the Championship in his first season with the club, Richards then worked diligently over the following seasons to ensure that Newcastle were able to consolidate their Premiership place.

Now, his side stand just two games away from Premiership glory.

Given his success, many would like to see Richards rewarded with the country's top job. However, Richards - who was this week named Premiership Director of Rugby of the Year - could seemingly have little less interest.

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He pointed to the strain of the media spotlight as to another reason why he was ruling himself out of contention.

"It takes a special person to do the international job. You only have to look at the treatment of Martin Johnson, Stuart Lancaster, Andy Robinson by the media and the RFU when it didn't go right. Why would I want to put myself through that?"

Current boss Eddie Jones' England deal is set to run until 2021, but his side's recent dip in form could see that agreement ended early if they fail to perform at next year's World Cup in Japan.

In that scenario - at least for now - the RFU should probably not pin their hopes on Dean Richards taking the reigns.

Aviva Premiership
England Rugby
Rugby Union
Newcastle Falcons

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