Scottish Rugby
Scotland to appoint interim coach?
ESPN Staff
November 27, 2012
Ospreys head coach Scott Johnson, Leicester Tigers v Ospreys, Heineken Cup, Welford Road, Leicester, England, October 11, 2009
Scott Johnson has been linked with the Scotland job on an interim basis © Getty Images

Former Scotland international Kenny Logan has suggested that the Scottish Rugby Union should turn to Scott Johnson to fill the void left by Andy Robinson on a temporary basis.

Robinson left his post as Scotland coach on Sunday following their 21-15 defeat to Tonga at Aberdeen. Johnson joined the SRU in the aftermath of their dismal 2012 Six Nations campaign and has taken up a position as senior assistant coach. And Logan claims that Johnson should take charge of the team on an interim basis for the forthcoming Six Nations, similar to what England did with Stuart Lancaster.

"I wouldn't rush into getting somebody before Christmas," Logan, who won 70 caps for Scotland, said. "I'd let the team sweat and see how they perform under Scott Johnson.

"It would be silly to try to get a coach for the start of the Six Nations. Do what England have done, see how the players react and what happens."

Various names have already been suggested for the post with Sean Lineen heavily linked with the interim role. According to reports, other expressions of interest have already been made and the formal process could begin by the end of this week. Led by SRU chief executive Mark Dodson, discussions over Robinson's successor have begun, with Nick Mallett, Jake White, Todd Blackadder, Wayne Smith and Bryan Redpath rumoured contenders.

Some have commitments elsewhere, meaning an interim appointment would make sense. But former Scotland coach Jim Telfer has suggested two different figures for the post - Gala's George Graham and former Blues coach Pat Lam - and goes on to claim that Johnson should not be considered for the interim role.

"What I think we need right at this moment is a bit of realism in the Scotland squad about where we are and where we can get to, and sometimes that comes not from a coach's skills on the field necessarily but in his approach and what he says," Telfer told the Scotsman. "What I like about George is that he never goes over the top about how good his players are, but is very honest.

"He is always looking for improvement from his players, at whatever level he has worked, and he has also built up a lot of experience as a coach over the past decade or so. I think Andy Robinson was a good coach and George is 
also a very honest coach. He has improved Gala enormously 
and has been around the 
international scene, and in Italy, for a while.

"I wouldn't appoint Scott Johnson, because he still has to prove himself as far as I'm concerned, but the SRU may do. But even if they go instead for Sean Lineen, who would be my preference, Graham would still be a good forwards coach for either of them.

"Another I would look at is Pat Lam, who worked with the Scotland squad along with Alan Tait before Matt Williams came in and took a different tack.

"Pat is a very good coach. He was dumped by the Blues this year after four years with them in Super Rugby, but he knows the game very well and is a 
positive coach, always looking to develop players and improve the team. That is the job, to bring these players together and push them to a higher standard; to their ultimate. I think Andy Robinson was trying to do that, but it's no easy job."

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