STUART LANCASTER SAYS he was firm in his mind when making a decision over his future after signing a new contract to remain as Leinster senior coach for the next two seasons. 

Both Lancaster and head coach Leo Cullen re-signed with the defending European and Pro14 champions last week in a major boost for Leinster as they bid to build on their recent success.

Stuart Lancaster pictured at UCD this afternoon. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

While the duration of Lancaster’s new deal was not disclosed, the 49-year-old confirmed he has agreed terms to remain at the club until 2021, in what is an excellent piece of business by Leinster. 

Lancaster had been heavily linked with a role on Andy Farrell’s Ireland coaching team after the World Cup, but made the ‘easy decision’ to stay with Leinster after rehabilitating his own career in Dublin and helping the province to a fourth Champions Cup crown in 2018.

The former England head coach’s stock has risen immeasurably during his three years at Leinster, and speaking to The42 this afternoon, Lancaster explained that his hands-on role and day-to-day responsibility within Cullen’s coaching ticket was a significant factor in him committing his future to the province.

“It was pretty easy, really,” he told The42. “I think I’ve said from the outset that I’ve been very lucky to have the opportunity to come to such a top club after coaching England.

“I’ve got the remit to look after attack and defence, coaching on a day-to-day basis so from a coaching point of view, it’s a brilliant environment to be in. 

“The big consideration for all these things are your family as much as anything else. It has worked well, the commute has been a challenge but it’s doable. My wife and kids are happy in that they can come across whenever they want and I can go home and see them. 

“It was quite an easy decision to make and obviously with Leo staying as well, it means that we can continue to work together and build on what we’ve achieved so far.”

On the speculation linking him with a move back into international rugby with Ireland, Lancaster explained: ”I speak to Andy all the time. I spoke to him during the Six Nations and we will catch up soon. But for me, the priority is to be a great club coach.   

“I was firm in my mind that I wanted to stay here. I mean obviously, Andy has got the challenge now of building his own coaching team. I’m sure he’ll build it over the course of the next four to six months.

“The reality is he needs it in place for January 2020. I’m sure he’ll do that but I’ve said consistently, I enjoy the day-to-day stuff here. I enjoy club coaching and I’m very lucky to be at a great club.”