Farrell extends deal as Ireland rugby coach after beating NZ

DUBLIN (AP) – With his stock high after a series win in New Zealand, Andy Farrell signed a contract extension as Ireland’s rugby coach on Friday that ties him to the position until 2025.

Farrell could have been a potential replacement for England manager Eddie Jones, who will step down after the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

But Farrell, 47, is committed to Ireland beyond that moment, with the new deal announced two weeks after Ireland claimed their first series win over the All Blacks in New Zealand to climb to the top of the world rankings .

Irish rugby performance director David Nucifora said the contract extension was agreed ahead of the New Zealand tour.

“Andy is one of the most outstanding coaches in world rugby and his work in leading the transition within the national team since the 2019 Rugby World Cup has been outstanding,” Nucifora said.

“Ireland are currently the No.1 team in the world, an incredibly tough five-match tour of New Zealand was a success on several levels and a Triple Crown was achieved at the 2022 Six Nations Championship. A manager of the caliber of ‘Andy will always be in high demand, and we are delighted that he has agreed to extend his contract with the IRFU.’

Farrell stepped down from his role as England assistant manager after the 2015 World Cup, when the country, as the host nation, failed to get out of the pool stage.

Farrell, who played for England in both rugby league and rugby union, became Ireland’s backs coach in 2016 under Joe Schmidt and succeeded the New Zealander as head coach after the World Cup World of 2019.

“As a group we’ve made it clear that we’re building towards the 2023 Rugby World Cup,” Farrell said, “and we’ve made some decent steps towards that in recent months.”

IRFU chief executive Kevin Potts said there is an option to extend Farrell’s contract further “based on a series of mutually agreed performance markers”.

Farrell’s son Owen has captained the England rugby team in recent years.

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