The impact of the new coach ticket on the global coach market

A look at how New Zealand’s coaching certification has had an impact after the 2023 World Cup and could continue to impact head coaching roles around the world. Credit: Alamy

On Wednesday, New Zealand Rugby confirmed Scott Robertson’s coaching staff from 2024, and the announcement will have a domino effect on a number of coaching jobs around the world.

The end of the four-year Rugby World Cup cycle often brings a lot of change, but with the All Blacks making unprecedented changes we haven’t seen in a decade, it will have an impact on global coaching.

Planet Rugby looks at the impact it had and who could filling the vacancies it created.

Leon MacDonald

Let’s start with MacDonald. It has been widely reported over the past 12 months that MacDonald would choose between New Zealand and Scotland for 2024.

He was being replaced by Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend and confirmed he had other offers.

“I had conversations with a few different people because you never knew what was going to happen,” MacDonald said. “It was a good chance to think about the next thing.

“But the All Black It was always the highlight – the dream job.”

So, with MacDonald favoring New Zealand over Scotland, it looks like Townsend will remain as head coach.

Scotland’s rise in form during the Six Nations boosted confidence in the former half, and The Rising he reported in early April that he had been offered a two-year extension.


The Blues will need to replace MacDonald ahead of next season, and it has been revealed that former Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has been approached for the job.

However, Rennie will head to Japan to lead the Kobelco Kobe Steelers. He was reportedly committed to the role while still working with the Wallabies.

Blues chief executive Andrew Hore told Sky Sport they are looking for a ‘statesman’ to replace MacDonald – a coach to further develop the promising playing and coaching squad at the Auckland-based side.

Having already worked with the Blues, Joe Schmidt is being targeted for the role as he leaves the All Blacks team alongside Ian Foster. Things Schmidt is reported to have a ‘big offer’ with an unnamed team in France.

If the former Irish head coach does not take the Blues job, former Wallabies boss Robbie Deans could.

Deans has had great success with the Panasonic Wild Knights in Japan since 2014.

The 63-year-old could return to Super Rugby after winning five titles with the Crusaders between 2000 and 2008. The Reds are also keen on his services after confirming that Brad Thorn will eventually step down from his role of the season.

Crusaders and Leinster

Meanwhile, with Robertson leaving the Crusaders after a very successful spell, his assistant Scott Hansen was to be one of the frontrunners to take over as head coach of the Canterbury team.

However, with Hansen joining the All Blacks core, the Crusaders are now in the market for a head coach.

It is reported that assistant coach Tamati Ellison feels it is too early to step into the top job, and the same goes for Canterbury coach Marty Bourke.

One man whose name comes up again and again is Leinster’s current attack coach, Andrew Goodman. He left the Crusaders at the end of the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific season to join Leo Cullen’s team. But he is still thought to be one of the headliners at the Crusaders gig.

Hurricane, Japan and Sharks

The Hurricanes are ready to take their time in finding Jason Holland’s replacement, with no names attached to the role yet.

But Jamie Joseph is believed to be in his final year as Japan’s head coach and could be an option for some New Zealand teams. He could fit the profile of the Blues, Hurricanes and Crusaders.

After losing the All Blacks top job, will Joe be keen to return to New Zealand with the Super Rugby team?

Current All Blacks employer Foster will be in the market for a new job before 2024. He is unlikely to take one of the Super Rugby jobs in New Zealand. Therefore cwould it replace Thorn at the Reds? Or will it be on its way to Japan or Europe? Only time will tell with this one.

John Plumtree, one of Foster’s assistants until last year, is also considering his options. The experienced coach has been spotted in South Africa and is reportedly toying with a contract offer to become head coach of the Sharks again.

However, according to South African media, the Durban-based side are facing competition for his services. A return to the Hurricanes could also be on the cards for the 57-year-old.

There is also a possibility that former Wales head coach Wayne Pivac could take one of the Super Rugby jobs. He still has a role to play since he was sacked in December.

READ MORE: Leon MacDonald: Working with the All Blacks the ‘pinnacle’

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