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Saints Boss Interested in England Job
Mallinder throws hat into the ring
Posted Nov 03, 2011 by Chris White
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Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder has thrown his hat into the ring to succeed current England coach Martin Johnson – should the World Cup winning captain relinquish his post – with his future in doubt after the disappointing seven weeks in New Zealand, both on and off the field.
Johnson’s contract expires at the end of 2011 and the RFU are currently considering whether or not to offer him a new deal, while Johnson himself is considering his own future in the job. But 45-year old Mallinder, who has won 15 of his 15 games in charge of the England Saxons, has declared his interest in replacing the former Leicester man.
Mallinder believes that “Every player should aspire to play for their country, and it’s the same for coaches too, you aspire to be the best you can. If one day I ever have that honour, it would be something that would be very difficult to turn down.”
The position could be handed to him sooner than he thinks, should Johnson be given the boot by the RFU, who are to hold a number of reviews into the team’s performance and behaviour during the recent World Cup, in which England were knocked out at the quarter-final stage.
Mallinder played twice for England in 1997 and coached the Saxons between 2006 and 2007, including a Churchill Cup victory over the New Zealand Maori, and he lead Northampton to the Heineken Cup Final last season, losing 33-22 to Leinster.