Stuart Lancaster remains undecided over whether he will remain as England coach beyond the Rugby World Cup after his side ended their campaign by crushing Uruguay in Manchester. Nick Easter and Jack Nowell both scored hat-tricks, but the ten-try rout only worked to emphasise the failure to clinch a draw with Wales, a result which would have been good enough to reach the quarter-final.
Instead, England are left to contemplate having become the first host nation to be knocked out at the pool stage and it leaves the Rugby Football Union to decide Lancaster’s fate, after close to four trophyless years leading the senior team. Lancaster however is curiously indecisive when quizzed on whether he wishes to stay on, despite having five years remaining on his current contract.
“I haven’t really had the chance to think about it [if I want to stay on],” he explained after the 60-3 win at the Manchester City Stadium. “You’re going through what has been a very difficult week. The emotion of this game, you get the emotion of coaching England and in front of a fantastic crowd you see young players play, you see the character of the team and everything that it has been built and. That changes to how we felt on Monday when we’d lost. I think you have to allow the dust to settle and it won’t my decision anyway.
“I think anyone in my position who has worked since December 2011 to this point would say it would be hard to walk away from but equally I understand it is a results business. It is a difficult one to answer at the moment because I haven’t had the chance to sit down and think about it. There has been a lot going on this week and a to of people with opinions but what I have tried to do is ensure the culture of the team has said strong during the week and says a lot about he players and what we have built because other teams under this type of pressure and scrutiny may have cracked.
“To this point I feel I’ve worked hard. I have tried to make the right decisions on what I believe rugby is founded on. People talk about the core values but they are important. We have tried to play good exciting rugby. We have not nailed every big moment in every big game and that has come to hurt us massively in this World Cup but that should not detract from the quality of this team.”