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Philippe Saint-Andre targeted for DoR role - report

By Neil Fissler
Philippe Saint-Andre faced an uncertain future after France bombed out of the 2015 World Cup (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Lyon have approached former France coach Philippe Saint-André to become director of rugby and work alongside current boss Fabien Gengenbacher from the start of next season.

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Lyon have made it clear that former Grenoble full-back Gengenbacher, 40, will be staying at the club next season and that they want Saint-André to work alongside him to add some much-needed experience to the coaching staff according to Midi Olympique.

After finishing third last season and losing a qualifying semi-final to Bordeaux, Le Lou have disappointed this season with only Saint-André ’s former club, Montpellier; and Oyonnex below them in the Top 14 table.

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They also crashed out of the Champions Cup in the round of 16 after being crushed 59-19 by the Bulls in South Africa, and they believe Saint-André could be the right man to get them back on track.

Lyon, who were Challenge Cup winners in 2022, have been working hard off the pitch to revamp the squad, with six signings already made to strengthen them, particularly in the forwards.

Saint-André, 57, started his coaching career with Gloucester in 1998 before taking charge of Bourgoin-Jallieu, Sale Sharks, guiding them to a Premiership crown in 2006, Toulon, France and Montpellier.

He guided Montpellier to their first Top 14 in 2022 but left them in November 2023 when Club owner Mohed Altrad took some drastic steps to try and turn around their form after a disastrous start to the season.

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After the team’s slump to the bottom of the Top 14 table, he sacked head coach Richard Cockerill and brought in disgraced former FFR president Bernard Laporte, who was given a two-year suspended prison sentence for his financial dealings with Altrad.

Saint-André is set to have more talks with Lyon in the next few weeks as he weighs up his options for a potential return to the game next season.

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