Mike Ford hopes George will take up the ‘challenge’ of a code switch

Jared Wright
Oldham Managing Director Mike Ford and son George Ford with England teammate Maro Itoje.

Oldham Managing Director Mike Ford and son George Ford with England teammate Maro Itoje.

Mike Ford, England fly-half George Ford’s father, hopes that his son will switch codes before bringing his rugby career to an end.

Mike, who once coached his son George during his tenure as Bath Rugby head coach between 2013 and 2016, harbours a deep-rooted hope that the duo could reunite on the field again.

Ford Senior is currently the managing director of Oldham Rugby League Club and has overseen a rebuild at the side.

Rugby League switch

The Fords are deeply rooted in Oldham, with father Mike playing over 150 games for his beloved hometown club despite starting his career with Wigan.

George, like long-time England teammate Owen Farrell, looked set to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a rugby league star.

He had played in the Wigan Warriors and Bradford Bulls academies in his youth before joining Leicester Tigers at 16.

Mike hopes to restore Oldham to its former glory, so he is urging the community to get involved.

“For the club to grow and get back to where I believe it belongs we have to do it as a town,” Ford stressed. “Buy a scarf, a season ticket or just bring a friend. We can do this if we muck in together,” he told Love Rugby League.

READ: One year in, Mike Ford’s determination to rebuild Oldham burns brightly: and could son George join one day?

But he also hopes that George will have one more challenge in him when he decides to bring the curtain down on his rugby union career.

“I’m hoping that when he is 35 or 36, he decides he has one more challenge in him,” he said.

“He comes back to the league and plays for Oldham.”

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George cementing himself in the England team

Farrell and Ford have combined in the England jersey on countless occasions during their career, but with the former making himself unavailable for international duty, the latter was in danger of losing his spot in the squad to the young up-and-comers.

Ford’s performances during the earlier stages of the 2024 Six Nations drew plenty of criticism, but he shifted opinion, particularly in England’s final match against France.

The 31-year-old is closing in on becoming the seventh Men’s international player to rack up 100 Test caps for the Red Rose, having earned his 96th cap against France in the final round.

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