Cotter confirmed as new Scotland coach
May 16, 2013
Clermont boss Vern Cotter has reportedly been offered the Scotland job © Getty Images
Clermont Auvergne boss Vern Cotter has been confirmed as the new Scotland coach but he will not make the switch until the end of next season.
The Scottish Rugby Union (SRU) announced today that the 51-year-old would link up with the Scots in June 2014 when his contract at the Top 14 club expires. Reports suggest that SRU were unwilling to pay the compensation demanded by Clermont that would have secured Cotter an early release from his contract.
The Kiwi has long-been linked with the position vacated by Scott Johnson who was recently promoted to a director of rugby role, with confirmation of his appointment coming from SRU chief executive Mark Dodson.
He said: "We always knew we would secure Vern's services from June 2014, until then, he will be on hand to assist Scott Johnson and the Scotland coaching team with advice during the autumn Tests in November and the 2014 RBS 6 Nations Championship before joining us full-time as head coach ahead of our summer tour next year."
Cotter has been under increasing pressure to clarify his future since speculation began a couple of months ago and following his side's Heineken Cup Final defeat and their surprising loss in the Top 14 semi-finals, he has confirmed he will still be at Clermont next season but it will be his last at the Stade Marcel Michelin.
Dodson added: "We are delighted to have secured the services of a coach of Vern's pedigree for the Scotland team. Vern is rightly regarded as one of the top coaches in the world and to have secured someone of his calibre is a coup for Scotland.
"He was our first choice as head coach and we are pleased to have secured him on a two-year contract taking us up to and beyond the Rugby World Cup 2015. We compiled a shortlist of world-class candidates last December and Vern was top of that list.
"We did our business with Vern some months ago and we believe we have the best man for the role with our national team. It's a measure of our standing that we have him on board.
"We delayed our announcement out of respect to Clermont and Vern as they prepared for the two most important games in their season. We are satisfied that we conducted our business in an honourable fashion and are sure Clermont appreciated our discretion."
Cotter's coaching career has included spells at Bay of Plenty and the Crusaders where he worked as an assistant to Robbie Deans. He linked up with Clermont in 2006 and led them to the European Challenge Cup title the following year before landing the Top 14 title in 2010.
In an SRU statement, Cotter said: "I'm absolutely thrilled and honoured to have been appointed to the role of Scotland head coach. Mark Dodson and the team at Scottish Rugby have a strategic vision and a determination to do something very special in the coming time and working with them and a talented group of players and coaches I look forward to the Scotland team growing in competitiveness and stature. We will build a winning team together.
"I have been in regular contact with Mark and Scott Johnson in recent weeks and I'm delighted that Jonathan Humphreys has joined the coaching team. I very much look forward to joining Scotland and until I do permanently I will be on hand to support Scott and the coaches with any advice and support they need."
Johnson was already set to continue in charge of Scotland for this summer's quadrangular tournament in South Africa alongside the Springboks, Samoa and Italy and he is now set to continue in the role for the end of year internationals and next year's Six Nations before Cotter steps in to guide the Scots to the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The latest Week in Pictures takes in a fiery East Midlands derby and all the action from the Aviva Premiership and Top 14
The rolling maul is becoming an increasingly potent attacking weapon. Conor O'Shea looks at the difficulties of stopping it
The news of James Horwill, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Dan Carter's respective transfers will open the floodgates, writes Tom Hamilton