Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

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Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Welly on Mon 02 Jan 2017, 12:34 pm

First topic message reminder :

End of a era.

http://www.leicestertigers.com/news/25986.php

Richard Cockerill is to leave his position as director of rugby at Leicester Tigers with immediate effect.
Former Tigers and England hooker Cockerill has been on the coaching staff at the club since 2004, becoming director of rugby in 2010.

Cockerill said: "It is with great sadness and regret that I leave my position as director of rugby with immediate effect. I still believe that I am the right person to lead the team at this present time but respect the Board's decision to make change as they see fit in the best interests of the club.

"I wish to thank the club and in particular Simon Cohen and Peter Tom for giving me the opportunity to lead this great club and the support they have given me in the last seven years.

"I arrived back at the club in 2004 as an academy coach and leave as DOR with a record that speaks for itself and stands up against any in club rugby in the world.

"This club has made me the person and the coach I am today and I will never forget what they have done for me.

"I wish Tom Youngs and the team the very best for the future and will miss being part of the Tigers Family."

Cockerill joined the club as a player in 1992 and became a member of the 'ABC Club' front row with Graham Rowntree and Darren Garforth, making 262 appearances, winning five league titles, two domestic cups and back-to-back European Cups. He also earned 27 caps for England.

After two years with Montferrand in France, Cockerill returned to Leicester for a second spell as a player and joined the coaching staff, initially with the academy. He worked as forwards coach and twice as interim head coach before being named head coach as Tigers won the Premiership title and reached the European Cup Final in 2009.

Tigers retained the Premiership crown in 2010 and Cockerill became director of rugby in July that year. The team reached the Premiership Final again in 2011 and 2012, as well as winning the Anglo-Welsh Cup in 2011/12, and the team collected a record 10th league title with victory in May 2013.

Tigers chairman Peter Tom CBE said: "We thank Richard for his loyal and dedicated service as a player, coach and director of rugby. He has a great passion for the club and for the game of rugby, and has shared in many massive occasions with the Tigers.

"The club always has aspirations to contest the major honours in the game and that remains unchanged but the board believes this is the right time to make a change."

Tigers head coach Aaron Mauger will be in interim charge of team affairs working with coaches Richard Blaze and Geordan Murphy and the existing support staff.

The Board will also conduct a review of the coaching structure to determine an appropriate way forward.

The club will not make any further comment at this stage.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Wed 04 Jan 2017, 7:05 pm

Can't see Cockers going to Wasps. That would surely grate on him. Taking over at Nottingham, going to France or getting an international role is more likely.

Tom Youngs has confirmed that there was no players revolt.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 9:53 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:Tom Youngs has confirmed that there was no players revolt.

As Mandy Rice-Davies said "........"

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 11:51 am

If there was a players revolt I doubt they'd have bothered trying to get Tom involved, he and Cockers had an excellent relationship.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Rugby Fan on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 12:04 pm

I can understand why Ben Kay would want to dismiss rumours of what transpired if they are at odds with his own understanding.

However, there's never one opinion about what happened in these kinds of cases, and the narrative will get keep getting reworked until Leicester can give people something positive to talk about.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Gooseberry on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 12:54 pm

Maugers comments more than hint at friction caused by his and Cockerills relationship, and that rather than revolt that the players may have been asked their opinions by the board on the atmosphere.
Things obviously havent been rosey...injuries or nit some of their performances have been way below par this season and the talent in the squad hasnt show on match days

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Welly on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 1:08 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:I can understand why Ben Kay would want to dismiss rumours of what transpired if they are at odds with his own understanding.

However, there's never one opinion about what happened in these kinds of cases, and the narrative will get keep getting reworked until Leicester can give people something positive to talk about.

You say that but being on the board and being good friends with Cockers he prob the most balanced you can get.

I think the trouble is we had two head coaches instead of a DOR and a Head Coach, and the two coaches had very very different views on how to coach and play.


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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by king_carlos on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 1:21 pm

Well put Welly.

I think Cockers was more than capable of doing the DOR job at Tigers given how well he knows the club. He was probably taking on too many coaching duties to do everything on his plate as well as needed though.

The promotion of Brett Deacon to deal with forwards and defence as well as Stanko to deal the scrum sums this up. Since Hansen left it appears that Cockers has effectively been taking on defence coaching as well as DOR, forwards and scrum coach. Add to that the fact that he always took on day to day coaching roles that a head coach would usually deal with and there was a real clash of roles between Mauger and Cockers.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by nathan on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 6:12 pm

With cockers no longer being there it should free up some funds unless he was handed a severance package

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 05 Jan 2017, 8:13 pm

nathan wrote:With cockers no longer being there it should free up some funds unless he was handed a severance package

There's no way he'll have been sacked and given nothing. There was a season and a half left on a contract he signed when we were trying to stop him joining Clermont. I doubt they'll be any additional funds immediately available to us. We're probably paying him until he finds work or his contract would have ended.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Gooseberry on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 8:50 am

Latest interview with Mauger mentions Johnson as a possible figurehead. That would help break the grey area between coach and DOR which supposedly caused the friction.

How realistic that is I dont know.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Big on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 9:37 am

Gooseberry wrote:Latest interview with Mauger mentions Johnson as a possible figurehead. That would help break the grey area between coach and DOR which supposedly caused the friction.

How realistic that is I dont know.

I may have missed the obvious, but where is that Mauger interview as I'd be interested to read/listen? Cheers.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by screamingaddabs on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 10:13 am

To be fair to Mauger he was asked something along the lines of "Do you think the club will consider Martin Johnson for the role?". That's a question he can't say no to isn't it! Imagine of he had said "no, they won't be looking at Martin". Instead he said something along the lines of "I'm sure he will be considered", which is the only sensible answer he could give.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 10:54 am

Tigers are having additional training sessions at the moment so there are obviously things that Mauger and the new coaches want changed.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 5:58 pm

As expected he's ended up in France, working with Toulon until the end of the season. I'm sure he'll be using his free time there to explore long term options.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Welly on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 6:19 pm

Yeh a good season with Toulon would prob mean his pick of French clubs.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Fri 06 Jan 2017, 7:20 pm

Good move for Cockers and Toulon. They need an injection of something extra up front and Cockers isn't one to shy away from aggression and physicality in rugby. Could help give them the kick up the backside they need.

With it only being until the end of the season is that perfect timing for him to join the England summer tour and cover for Borthwick?

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Gooseberry on Sat 07 Jan 2017, 1:21 pm

Yeah shrewd move on all fronts youd say.
Low pressure low profile job for cockers but a move back to coaching which is probably his future rather than wheeler dealing in the backrooms with boards and agents.
The overpaid prima donnas at Toulon wont know whats hit them the first time they show up late to a training session. Joking aside he will bring a sterner attitude and higher expectations of discipline in training than is perhaps the norm in french rugby.

Would also be nice to see him hoin the england fold over the summer which would them set him up nicely to be a prime candidate for any head coach roles going.

All in though its sad to see him having left tigers even if it had become the right thing to do.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Gwlad on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 3:25 am

Jonno or Lancaster….both ill qualified other than as dismal fails as national coaches. Leicester surely have more smarts than that?

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Big on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 8:58 am

Gwlad wrote:Jonno or Lancaster….both ill qualified other than as dismal fails as national coaches. Leicester surely have more smarts than that?

I would hardly call Jonno a dismal fail as national coach. He started from a low (unsurprisingly given he had no experience and was completely out of his depth) but world cup aside was consistently improving and getting more out of the team - and managed England's first 6 nations win in a long time, first away win against a SANZAR team in a long time, and generally oversaw some really good rugby towards the end (even if consistency was still lacking). Personally, I think that consistent improvement is as much as can be hoped for from a novice, and a success in that context (I don't think England should have picked someone that needed to learn the job - but that's a different matter).

And even with the world cup not going that well, at least he got out of the group and did so while quite likely being distracted by the civil war that was going on at the RFU at the time. I'm also confident that he would have learnt from the experience and done better consequently - unlike Lancaster who was consistently 'OK', and never showed any sign of learning and improving that I could see.

In a better supported role, and with time to grow into it (and crucially I think Jonno is one of the few people Tigers fans would be patient with) I think he could do really well. Given a limited budget and the club's apparent desire to have people who understand the club ethos I'd say that makes him a pretty decent shout, even if there is a risk that it wouldn't work.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 9:30 am

I'd take no notice Big, any chance to knock/wum the English.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by formerly known as Sam on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 12:46 pm

Johnno could be well suited to the DOR role. The problem has been that Cockers was as much a head coach as a DOR. Having Johnno there to deal with the media, player negotiating etc could allow a head coach like Mauger to just get on with getting Leicester to play.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by king_carlos on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 1:06 pm

To my eyes the problem also seemed to be a squad put together with a view to playing a Mauger game plan that was then playing a Cockerill game plan.

The hopes were that their contrasting styles could complement each other in the long run but that hasn't been the case unfortunately.

I wouldn't be surprised to see fairly sudden improvements in our attacking play as Maugers game plan comes into place. More line breaks and scoring opportunities could come quickly. The usual lack of ruthlessness in finishing chances will take longer to fix.

As for the inconsistent set-piece. That I hope will come together bit by bit as a structure for our starting pack is settled on. Ayerza coming back will help the set-piece as well.

The defence is of course the biggest issue and one that will only be fixed with a consistent defence coach with a clear strategy to implement over a decent period of time.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by Big on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 1:20 pm

king_carlos wrote:

I wouldn't be surprised to see fairly sudden improvements in our attacking play as Maugers game plan comes into place. More line breaks and scoring opportunities could come quickly. The usual lack of ruthlessness in finishing chances will take longer to fix.


Sadly I agree, but I hope it happens sooner rather than later. I remember the Pat Howard days, when every time there was a line break I was (justifiably) confident we would score. Support runners always there, and everyone seemed to have the handling skills to get it to them.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by doctor_grey on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 11:24 pm

What is it about Rugby that coaches are almost always given the task of assembling the personnel of their team as well as coaching. To me, talent scouting and team assembly, let alone contract negotiations, are completely different skill sets than coaching. it seems many times good coaches, or gents who could be good coaches, are undone by being made DOR, the full responsibilities for which they might be completely unsuited. I think coaches should coach, team scouts should report to team management who make the final decisions (at least with input from all parties). Most American sports teams are organised that way, and it makes a lot of sense to me.

Using myself as an example, I am hell on wheels in an OR or A&E, or even the field. But I can't run a hospital. The same logic must apply.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

Post by king_carlos on Wed 11 Jan 2017, 1:41 am

Tigers operate with such little transparency in those regards that I don't think many fans know what goes on, doc. A fair few fans whisper about Peter Tom (exec chairman) and Simon Cohen (CEO) getting involved in those dealings when they are interested but I'm not sure how it's structured in reality.

When Cockers went many commented that if he needed to go due to the coaching staff needing a 'freshen up' then similar was needed in the boardroom as well.

The structure of the club is messy, in keeping with it's finances. The strain is showing from being a PLC in tournaments increasingly dominated by sugar-daddy clubs.

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Re: Leicester Tigers part ways with Cockerill.

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