"All-time low" - Steve Borthwick set 'ridiculously low' expectations for Rugby World Cup - Ruck

“All-time low” – Steve Borthwick set ‘ridiculously low’ expectations for Rugby World Cup

As long as England’s team advances to the knockout stages, Steve Borthwick, the head coach, can expect his job to remain secure.

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has reportedly set relatively low expectations for Borthwick, considering the limited time he had to imprint his own style on the squad after taking over from Eddie Jones in December.

With fixtures against Argentina, Japan, Chile, and Samoa in France, Borthwick enjoys a considerable leeway for the upcoming World Cup, given that he signed a contract until 2027 when assuming the role.

However, in a worst-case scenario where England fails to reach the quarter-finals, Borthwick’s position could face significant scrutiny.

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Possible replacements:

RUCK takes you through four coaches who could be sought out if Borthwick is given his marching orders after leading the nation to France…

Stuart Lancaster

The former England boss, who has seen his reputation go through the roof since the disastrous 2015 World Cup, will leave Leinster to become director of rugby at French club Racing 92 at the end of this season.

Lancaster has been Irish province’s senior coach since 2016, working under head coach Leo Cullen, while he spent four years as England boss before stepping down after in 2015.

During his time with Leinster, the Irish province won the Heineken Champions Cup in 2018 and four PRO14 titles.

Will Greenwood believes Lancaster deserves to have a second crack at the England job one day.

“I honestly believe he would be better a second time around,” said Greenwood.

“Failure is a vital part of success. Sir Clive Woodward probably would have lost his job in today’s climate after what happened in 1999 but he came back to win four years later. Graham Henry won the 2011 World Cup after being given another chance.

“Would Stuart want to come back? That is another question entirely.

“I haven’t asked him but I suspect the answer is yes. Stuart may be unassuming and softly-spoken but he is also a competitive animal. And a proud man. 

“I say this as a friend but he always looks good, if you know what I mean. He is a bloke who looks after himself physically. And he backs himself.”