Sean Long joins France’s coaching staff ahead of World Cup
Former Great Britain half-back Sean Long has joined France’s coaching staff ahead of the 2021 World Cup.
New head coach Laurent Frayssinous has also added ex-France international Maxime Gresque to his backroom team, which includes Sydney Roosters’ former Catalans Dragons head coach Trent Robinson as director of rugby.
Long, 44, joined Leeds as assistant coach at the start of the season after returning from a brief spell in rugby union with Harlequins and was expected to link up once more with Samoa for the World Cup.
Instead he will help sharpen the attack of France, who with Samoa are both in England’s group at the World Cup.
Frayssinous said: “I am very happy that Sean Long has agreed to become my assistant coach in charge of attack for the World Cup.
“He was one of the best players of his generation and has a reputation for being innovative and very rigorous in the attacking game.
“He was also assistant coach of the Samoa team during the last two World Cups and his knowledge of the Samoa group as well as that of the English will be very useful to us.
“Sean is a competitor, we share the same human values together and I know that he will bring to the group his always positive state of mind in addition to his skills.
“I want to thank the Leeds Rhinos club, Rich Agar and Kevin Sinfield for allowing us to benefit from Sean’s skills for the World Cup.”
Agar was France coach from 2013 to 2015, including the last World Cup in England.
Long, who will combine his new role with his Leeds job, said: “I am excited to start alongside Laurent and Maxime and to join the France team for the next World Cup.
“The France group is of very good quality, they have good players who play here in the Super League, the Catalan Dragons and Elite 1. I cannot wait to be there and to find the group quickly.”