Simon Mannix will lead Portugal

Portugal have appointed former All Black Simon Mannix as their new head coach.

Patrice Lagisquet stepped down after the 2023 Rugby World Cup, a tournament which was hugely successful for the team. They beat Fiji in the pool stage to claim their first-ever RWC win. The success has led to more matches against tier one sides, an example being their game against England A last February.

Read more: Portugal at Rugby Europe Championship

Portugal took their time to choose a successor and they have selected Mannix.

“Simon is a very experienced coach,” FPR president Carlos Amado da Silva said. “I am convinced that the style of play he implemented in his previous teams is the most suitable for our national team.

“Furthermore, he has a strong connection with France, both with the players and the clubs, which makes him the ideal profile we needed.”

A number of Portuguese players compete domestically for French clubs.

Mannix player for New Zealand once against France in 1994. At club level he competed for Wellington Lions, Wellington Hurricanes, Sale and Gloucester before retiring from playing in 2001.

His first job in coaching came at Racing 92 from 2007-2011. He then moved to Munster and later Pau. His first coaching job on the international stage happened in 2019 when he took charge of Singapore. He resigned from that post in 2021 and this role with Portugal is his first since then.

Portugal have a game scheduled for this summer and it is a big one. They will face the Rugby World Cup defending champions South Africa. The Springboks will host Portugal at the Free State Stadium on 20 July. It will be a good test for the new head coach.

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