Joe Schmidt Backed To Become Lions Head Coach In 2021


Ireland and Ulster captain Rory Best has backed Joe Schmidt to lead the British and Irish Lions on their tour of South Africa in 2021.

Schmidt is set to take a break from rugby when he steps away from his role as Ireland head coach following the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan. But with the Lions tour not coming until two years after that, Schmidt could be tempted back into coaching with the role.

Warren Gatland has coached the Lions on their last two tours, but has already stated he will not be coming back for a third. And Best thinks his current Ireland boss would be an excellent replacement.

“The Lions is one of the few things he hasn’t done. He hasn’t been given the opportunity to be successful there,” Best told Press Association Sport. 

“I have no doubt that he would be successful given that opportunity.

“There’s no doubt with the way he performs and the way he goes about his business that he could take the Lions and be successful with them.

“I think Joe could very, very comfortably walk into a Lions role and get a team prepared to win a Test series in South Africa.

“Right from the word go he’s expecting things from you. Very quickly the penny would drop, and everyone would enjoy being there.”