Paul Gustard says he can’t see Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall having any interest in succeeding Eddie Jones as England boss.
McCall is reportedly the Rugby Football Union’s preferred candidate to take over when Jones leaves his post.
Having led Saracens to four Premiership titles and two European Champions Cup triumphs, the Ulsterman is a logical choice.
But Gustard, who worked with McCall at Sarries before leaving the club to join Jones’ Red Rose coaching staff, believes it is a non-starter.
“I think he wouldn’t be interested in the slightest,” said the Harlequins boss. “Mark’s not a coach, he doesn’t coach. So I can’t see that being his kind of gig.
“As a human being he’s an incredible person,” added Gustard, recalling his his five years working alongside McCall. “He allowed other people to grow, he gave them rope, he gave us feedback when we needed it.
“He’s obviously managed to oversee a transformation and continued success of the club for a long period of time now. I just don’t think he’s be interested in international coaching at all. Speaking to him certainly in the past it’s never been something he's wanted to do.”
One contender dropped off the radar yesterday when Dean Ryan, head of international player development at the RFU, was announced as director of rugby of the Newport-based Dragons.
The former England No.8, who has had spells in charge of Gloucester and Worcester, also joins the board at Rodney Parade.
Gustard, meanwhile, says Saracens must be considered innocent unless any evidence of salary cap breaches are identified by the rugby authorities.
The English and European champions are under investigation by Premiership Rugby over co-investment arrangements which allegedly exist between owner Nigel Wray and some of his highest profile players.
“I understand people saying is it a way round the wage cap?” Wray said on Monday. “But there is a huge difference between investment – where the player can lose money, we can lose money – and salary. To me that’s a most important point.”
Gustard said: “For me they’ve done nothing wrong because nothing has been found to be wrong. Until (salary cap manager) Andrew Rogers decides to investigate thoroughly and do what he wants to do…
“If there’s a case to answer there's a case to answer. If not Saracens are innocent and should be applauded for being an English team that’s dominated Europe.”
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