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Fabien Galthie to join Frances management team before succeeding Jacques Brunel after World Cup

Fabien Galthie to join France’s management team before succeeding Jacques Brunel as head coach after World Cup in Japan

  • Fabien Galthie has been named in France’s World Cup management team 
  • He is then set to succeed current head coach Jacques Brunel post-tournament 
  • Former scrum-half earned 64 caps for his country and also captained Les Blues 

Fabien Galthie will join France’s management team this summer and take charge of the national team after this year’s World Cup.

The 50-year-old former scrum-half and captain of Les Bleus – who was named IRB World Player of the Year in 2002 – is due to take up a role within Jacques Brunel’s set-up in June, as a stepping stone to assuming control as head coach. 

He will be involved with France‘s World Cup campaign in Japan, where they are in the same pool as England, before stepping up to the top job at the end of this year.

Fabien Galthie will join France's management team for the World Cup in Japan

Fabien Galthie will join France's management team for the World Cup in Japan

Fabien Galthie will join France’s management team for the World Cup in Japan

His elevation by Bernard Laporte, the president of the French rugby federation comes after Gallic clubs were asked to vote on the prospect of a foreign coach being appointed to succeed Brunel. 

Wales’ Kiwi head coach Warren Gatland and another New Zealander in charge of a home nation – Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt – were regarded as leading candidates, but 59 per cent of clubs voted against turning to foreign expertise to revive France.

Laporte vowed to heed the poll result, despite stating that Schmidt was his own first choice for the role. He has been true to his word, by turning to the man he evidently believes is the best domestic candidate.

Galthie will replace current head coach Jacques Brunel who has endured a turbulent reign

Galthie will replace current head coach Jacques Brunel who has endured a turbulent reign

Galthie will replace current head coach Jacques Brunel who has endured a turbulent reign

Galthie enjoyed a decorated playing career, as a member of the France team which stunned the All Blacks to reach the World Cup Final in 1999. Three years later, he led his team to a Grand Slam. 

He has had moderately successful coaching stints with Stade Francais and Montpellier, and a shorter, acrimonious spell at Toulon, interspersed with periods of media work.

The appointment will have repercussions on this side of the Channel, as the path is clear for the RFU to target Gatland, to take over from Eddie Jones, when the Australian’s tenure as England head coach ends – either after this year’s World Cup or in 2021, when his extended contract expires. 

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