Leicester appoint Matt O'Connor as their new head coach

Last Updated March 20 2017, 19:15Rugby Union

Leicester have announced the Welford Road return of Australian Matt O'Connor as their head coach.

O'Connor is set to begin work early next month, subject to a visa, with current head coach Aaron Mauger leaving the Tigers after next Saturday's Aviva Premiership clash against Northampton.

The 46-year-old worked at Leicester between 2008 and 2013, initially as backs coach and then head coach. During that period, the Tigers won three Premiership titles.

After leaving Leicester, O'Connor became head coach at Leinster, a spell that included league title success and a European Champions Cup semi-final appearance.

Mauger, meanwhile, took control of Leicester's coaching team after Richard Cockerill departed as rugby director earlier this season.

But he now exits Welford Road as the Tigers, who won the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Sunday, continue their Premiership title play-off push.

Leicester chairman Peter Tom said: "The club have conducted an exhaustive search to find who we feel is the right person to take the team forward.

"And this brought up the names of a number of potentially very good coaches.

"One of the most significant factors in our deliberations was experience of the Premiership and what it takes to win the competition.

"Matt has that experience as head coach during a successful period which brought three league titles, an Anglo-Welsh Cup and the club's most recent appearance in the European Cup final.

"The team also topped the try-scoring figures in the Premiership four times in that five-year period with Matt in charge of the attack."

Tom, meanwhile, offered the club's thanks to former All Blacks centre Mauger.

"While preparing to welcome Matt, we are also disappointed to lose Aaron," he added.

"Matt's strengths are in his work with players on the training pitch, and we are making changes to our organisational structure to enable him to focus solely on the success of the team.

"We thank Aaron for his commitment to the club over the last two seasons as head coach, and especially in his time in interim charge of team affairs in recent months. We wish him well for the future."

Leicester club captain Tom Youngs said: "Matt has a good record in the Premiership and had a lot of success in his previous spell here. We look forward to working with him again when he arrives next month.

"At the same time, it is disappointing that Aaron is leaving the club.

"He is a good man and a good rugby man who has worked very hard as head coach over the last couple of seasons, and goes with our best wishes."

Leicester are currently fifth in the Premiership, one point behind Bath with five regular-season games remaining.


Most Read

Alan Pardew1

Monday's Paper Talk

"Furious" West Brom owner Guochan Lai has given Alan Pardew two games to save his job, according to The Sun.

Presenting Percy (near side) challenges Our Duke2

Ed Chamberlin: Weekend debrief

Ed Chamberllin reflects on a weekend's action in which he thinks he saw a novice hurdler who will win at the Cheltenham Festival.

Check out our Nap of the day3

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

Blottos is Matt Brocklebank's best bet today - and he's an exclusive Price Boost at 13/8 from evens with Sky Bet.

4

Monday's racing preview

Anita Chambers previews the action in the UK on Monday and has selections for every race at Carlisle, Kempton and Lingfield.

Getabird5

14/1 Festival Fever double Boost

Today's Sky Bet Festival Fever Price Boost is Getabird and Un De Sceaux both to win any race at Cheltenham - it's 14/1 from 9/1.

Most Read

Alan Pardew1

Monday's Paper Talk

"Furious" West Brom owner Guochan Lai has given Alan Pardew two games to save his job, according to The Sun.

Presenting Percy (near side) challenges Our Duke2

Ed Chamberlin: Weekend debrief

Ed Chamberllin reflects on a weekend's action in which he thinks he saw a novice hurdler who will win at the Cheltenham Festival.

Check out our Nap of the day3

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

Blottos is Matt Brocklebank's best bet today - and he's an exclusive Price Boost at 13/8 from evens with Sky Bet.

4

Monday's racing preview

Anita Chambers previews the action in the UK on Monday and has selections for every race at Carlisle, Kempton and Lingfield.

Getabird5

14/1 Festival Fever double Boost

Today's Sky Bet Festival Fever Price Boost is Getabird and Un De Sceaux both to win any race at Cheltenham - it's 14/1 from 9/1.

Racing Tips

Check out our Nap of the day

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

Blottos is Matt Brocklebank's best bet today - and he's an exclusive Price Boost at 13/8 from evens with Sky Bet.

Monday's racing preview

Anita Chambers previews the action in the UK on Monday and has selections for every race at Carlisle, Kempton and Lingfield.

Action from Wolverhampton

Tuesday's racing preview

Desert Wind should complete his hat-trick in the Betway Novice Stakes at Wolverhampton according to Ashley Iveson who has a tip for every race.

Next Race Off
14:20 Vincennes
14
(0)
Dorgali
J: D Thomain
9
(0)
D'Artagnan Du Pont
J: Leo Abrivard
12
(0)
Dream Du Roussoir
J: D Bonne

Football Tips

Dan Burn celebrates his goal for Wigan against Bournemouth

Monday's FA Cup betting tips

Nick Hext has an 80/1 tip among his selections for Monday's FA Cup fifth-round tie between Wigan and Manchester City.

Bury striker George Miller

Sky Bet EFL betting tips

Nick Hext is backing Bury striker George Miller to net in Monday night's Sky Bet League One trip to Blackburn, which is live on Sky Sports.

Get your bets on!

Our best bets

Check out all of our available betting tips and previews of the forthcoming sporting action.