Leicester Tigers have confirmed Geordan Murphy as their head coach after holding the position on an interim basis since the departure of Matt O’Connor.
The former Tigers full-back has been given a permanent role after seeing the team through its ongoing struggles in the league, while maintaining the support of the fanbase and the Welford Road board.
Tigers sit eight in the Premiership table as one of seven clubs to have won three of their nine league matches so far this season, and the Irishman vowed he was ready to instill the ‘base-level principles’ within a team he has helped coach since Richard Cockerill made his assistant backs coach in 2013.
Murphy told the club’s website: “It is a huge honour to be asked to be head coach at a club I know so well,” said the 40-year-old Murphy.
“This club means a lot to me, I’ve been here a long time and we all want to enjoy success with the Tigers.
“For me, performances on the field begin with the pride, passion and commitment you want to see from a Leicester Tigers team. It is about that passion for the shirt.
“A Leicester Tigers team is built around the beliefs of working hard for each other, everyone being a team player and also about having a real intent and integrity about what we do. These are base-level principles. That is what passion on the field looks like to me.
“Peter Tom and the Tigers Board have been very supportive of me. They’ve told me that whatever we need, they will support. The coaching team and the players have been very good since I was given the opportunity.
“We’ve had a challenging start to the season and we are working hard to improve performances and results, but this is also the start of a journey for this coaching team and playing group. There is a lot of quality there and we still have everything to play for this season.
“We are looking at how and what we can add to the coaching team in terms of experience and quality, and it has to be the right fit for the team.
“The supporters can play their part on that journey too and we hope they will be with us all the way.”
Arriving at Leicester as a teenager, Murphy spent 16 years as a player as player at Welford Road making 322 appearances for the club in that time.
Lending the backing of the board for Murphy’s vision, club chairman Peter Tom CBE complimented the Irishman for his leadership during a challenging peiod.
Tom said: “Geordan has his beliefs on what makes Tigers tick and how he wants that to work at Oval Park and at Welford Road, and we are delighted to be able to plan for the future with him as our head coach.
“He knows this club as well as anyone, as a player over 16 years here and now in five years as a coach. Although recent results have not been at the level we all expect, Geordan’s leadership, enthusiasm and hard work during a challenging period have impressed us all.
“Geordan has his own vision of how to get the best out of the coaches and players around him, and now is the time for everyone to work together to help his plans come to fruition.”
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