Mitchell keen to transform USA

Date published: January 5 2016

1022.6666666666666x767__origin__0x0_John_Mitchell_Lions_2011

New USA head coach John Mitchell has outlined where he wants to improve the side and his ambitions over the next four years.

Mitchell was announced as the successor to Mike Tolkin on Monday.

The former All Blacks, Force and Lions head coach has been working in the media in South Africa but is now set to return to coaching at the top level for the first time since he finished a consultancy role with Sale Sharks in 2012.

Mitchell hopes to see some significant investment when it comes to USA Rugby's recruitment of potential athletes, and he got to know the side better during his work covering the recent Rugby World Cup.

"The speed of development towards getting USA to win the World Cup will be dependent on the amount of money put behind marketing the game to the USA and player recruitment and development," Mitchell told the USA Rugby website.

"I was fortunate to watch the Eagles during my RWC 2015 commitments with commentating on games. I saw a team that was strong in carry in first phase and loved to shoot in defense.

"Lineout accuracy affected exit plays at vital times and the ability to play far end. Controlling the momentum of games for the first half was evident, but they struggled to get back on structure and get into shape from chaos. They often denied themselves opportunities to put pressure on the opposition as a result of this.

"Plenty of good stuff though that will become even better when the players understand their structures and own it.

"I am excited about putting my strengths into play and building on the solid work laid down in the last World Cup cycle by Mike Tolkin and his staff.

"I see this as a wonderful opportunity to play a key part in inspiring, mentoring, creating confidence and stability in transforming USA Rugby into a strong, globally-competitive unit by the end of 2019.

"For me personally, the USA is a very powerful nation that has a huge amount of athletic talent and an audience for this dynamic sport that can be strategically attractive to World Rugby."

COMMENTS