Select Edition

Northern Northern
Southern Southern
Global Global
NZ NZ

Bernard Laporte offered a role at Cockerill's Montpellier – report

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by John Berry/Getty Images)

Bernard Laporte is reportedly poised for a return to rugby at Montpellier, the club that fell to bottom place in the Top 14 with Saturday’s 23-16 loss at Perpignan. The 2021/22 champions recruited former England forwards coach Richard Cockerill as sports manager for the current season but they have won just one of their seven matches and they now occupy the automatic relegation spot to the Pro D2.

ADVERTISEMENT

Their latest setback was quickly followed by Midi Olympique reporting that Laporte has been offered a sporting director role above Cockerill in an effort to remedy the decline that has set in since Philippe Saint-Andre guided the club to their first-ever French title.

The report read: “Montpellier’s latest defeat away to Perpignan marks the poor start to the season for MHR, who are now bottom of the Top 14. In the Herault, the Richard Cockerill transplant is still not taking hold and president Mohed Altrad is opening a new avenue. As is often the case, it leads to Bernard Laporte…

Video Spacer

Rugbypass TV

Watch rugby on demand, from exclusive shows and documentaries to extended highlights from RWC 2023. Anywhere. Anytime. All for free!

Join us

Video Spacer

Rugbypass TV

Watch rugby on demand, from exclusive shows and documentaries to extended highlights from RWC 2023. Anywhere. Anytime. All for free!

Join us

“Altrad has said at the beginning of the week, in the columns of Midi Libre: ‘There are no fundamental problems. To say that there is fire everywhere, I don’t believe it. We’re not going to go down to Pro D2… There’s no point in changing. When it’s like that, you have to be patient. If in three weeks there are three more defeats, it may not be the same.’

Behind the scenes, however, the president of the MHR anticipates a worst-case scenario… According to our information, Altrad has resumed active contacts in recent days with a long-time friend: Bernard Laporte, former president of the FFR (2016-2023), coach of the XV of France (2000-2007) and who, in 2016, had already almost committed to the MHR at the end of his Toulon adventure.

“The fate of trainer Richard Cockerill, whose transplant is slow to take hold and who is already threatened, is not directly linked to the arrival (or not) of Laporte in the Herault. However, this would be a new signal of defiance.

“At MHR, Laporte would stay away from the pitch as he was offered a role as director in charge of sporting affairs. His first mission was to work on the current staff and make the necessary changes to get the machine back on track. This would further increase the pressure on Cockerill.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Contacted several times in recent days, Laporte received an oral offer for the position. A request for which he is expected to give his response in the coming days. It remains to be seen how such a signature would be received, less than a year after the conviction of the two men in a case of active corruption, influence peddling and misuse of company assets.

“As a reminder, Mohed Altrad received an 18-month suspended prison sentence and a fine of 50,000 euros. Laporte, for his part, was sentenced to three years in prison (including one year in prison) and a fine of 50,000 euros for four similar charges.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Join free

LIVE

{{item.title}}

Trending on RugbyPass

Comments

0 Comments
Be the first to comment...

Join free and tell us what you really think!

Sign up for free
ADVERTISEMENT

Latest Features

Comments on RugbyPass

FEATURE
FEATURE How England can shatter the All Blacks' Eden Park streak How England can shatter the All Blacks' Eden Park streak
Search