England Rugby
Lancaster praise for Ferguson blueprint
ESPN Staff
May 9, 2013
England coach Stuart Lancaster is looking at other options

England coach Stuart Lancaster has spoken of his desire to emulate legendary Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

Lancaster, a keen student of coaching and management techniques, has long been a fan of Ferguson who announced yesterday that he would be retiring after 27 trophy-laden years at Old Trafford.

Ferguson's longevity is just one of the qualities that Lancaster admires with the Scot's ability to rejuvenate his squad while challenging consistently for titles another key influence on his hopes and plans for Rugby World Cup glory in 2015.

"What I admire about him (Ferguson) most is his longevity and his ability to continually keep his team at the top of the performance cycle," Lancaster told PA Sport. "What teams typically tend to do is get to the top of the clock, using the clock analogy, and then they don't change and they start dropping down.

"He has always managed to change and renew his team at the right time but keep the energy, the discipline and culture from within and continue to win. He is a model for all young coaches like me."

Lancaster's determination to use Ferguson's blueprint for success and keep his own squad fresh saw him name 11 uncapped players for the forthcoming tour of Argentina. Stripped of those players selected for the British & Irish Lions tour to Australia, Lancaster has also decided to rest key players has been taken specifically with the 2015 World Cup in mind, with this summer being the last opportunity for those players to enjoy an extended break before the tournament on home soil. England tackle New Zealand in a three-Test series next summer before heading into what is effectively a 14-month season that ends with the World Cup on home soil.

"The (rested players) are aware that come September there's going to be more competition for places," said Lancaster, who has guaranteed usual captain Chris Robshaw a place in England's elite squad for the autumn Tests against Australia, Argentina and New Zealand - but nothing more, with selection to be based on form and fitness.

"I assured them it wasn't going to harm their long-term international careers by not going," he said. "I actually think it will benefit them. Once they were reassured about that and once they reassured that if the Lions came and ask for them they'd be considered, they accepted my decision.

"It gives me the opportunity to look at other players in their position also, so it increases competition. The next big goal for England players - and it's a pretty big goal - is to try to win a World Cup in our own back yard. If anyone is struggling for motivation for that, they've got a problem."

Forwards: Dave Attwood (Bath Rugby), Rob Buchanan (Harlequins), Calum Clark (Northampton Saints), Alex Corbisiero (London Irish), Paul Doran Jones (Northampton Saints), Tom Johnson (Exeter Chiefs), Matt Kvesic (Worcester Warriors), Joe Launchbury (London Wasps), Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints), Joe Marler (Harlequins) , Ben Morgan (Gloucester Rugby), David Paice (London Irish), Ed Slater (Leicester Tigers), Henry Thomas (Sale Sharks), Billy Vunipola (London Wasps), Rob Webber (Bath Rugby), David Wilson (Bath Rugby), Tom Wood (Northampton Saints, captain)

Backs: Mike Brown (Harlequins), Freddie Burns (Gloucester Rugby), Lee Dickson (Northampton Saints), Kyle Eastmond (Bath Rugby), Ben Foden (Northampton Saints), Alex Goode (Saracens), Jonathan Joseph (London Irish), Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby), David Strettle (Saracens), Joel Tomkins (Saracens), Billy Twelvetrees (Gloucester Rugby), Christian Wade (London Wasps), Richard Wigglesworth (Saracens), Marland Yarde (London Irish)

Anthony Allen (Leicester Tigers) and James Haskell (London Wasps) were not considered on medical grounds

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