Conor O’Shea joins RFU as Nigel Melville steps down
Conor O’Shea will combine the RFU as director of performance to replace Nigel Melville, that leaves his position as manager of rugby.
Melville will depart next month to”pursue other opportunities”, while O’Shea, who resigned as Italy coach earlier this month, occupies his role next year.
In a declaration issued Friday, the RFU stated O’Shea will likely be”accountable for the direction, direction and strategic direction of the professional sport in England.
“Together with the aim to support long-term sustainable success at global level, [that he ] will manage the England players, training and game officials paths throughout men’s and women’s 15s and Sevens programmes”
Reporting to CEO Bill Sweeney, O’Shea will also oversee operation Baseball surgeries, including the management around the Professional Game Agreement, Greene King IPA Championship, Tyrrells Premier 15s, Rugby Players Association, health governance and player welfare, sports science, and anti-doping and rivalry frameworks.
“I’ve spent the last four decades in Italy, six years at Harlequins and before that 10 years at London Irish, so I believe I understand the system quite well,” O’Shea said.
“The good times, the bad times, winning things and being competitive, so I can relate to the challenges and people that happen within our system. I’ve learned a enormous amount in the last few decades.
“There is an exciting vision in the RFU. It is not just about winning tomorrowbut also about sustaining success and winning into the future.
“We could look forward to rejuvenating and re-energising the performance pathway to assist, support and push England soccer on.
“Along with our relationships with all stakeholders, it’s all about women’s rugby, sevens, referees and trainer development, which will be absolutely fundamental.”
The 49-year-old will work closely together with the head coach Eddie Jones of England men , however the England group remains the duty of Jones that will continue to record directly to Sweeney.
Melville, who acted as interim CEO at the first half of 2019 before Sweeney’s coming leaves the RFU after three and a half years at the helm.
“I am proud of all that the organization has achieved over the previous three years through some tough times,” said Melville.
“I think that England Rugby is in a wonderful spot and that exiting following the 2019 Rugby World Cup is the ideal time as the RFU start a new age and prepare yourself for the next Rugby World Cup cycle.”
Sweeney said:”On behalf of everyone at the RFU, I’d love to thank Nigel for his valuable contribution to the organisation and to England Rugby.
“His knowledge and professionalism of sport is exceptional and he will be missed. I am thankful for the service he has granted to me personally because I joined. He leaves with our best dreams for the future.”