Paul O’Connell has ruled himself out of becoming Munster’s head coach next season, explaining that he believes he is nowhere near qualified enough to take on the role.
Former Munster and Ireland captain O’Connell is currently working as his country’s forwards coach, and appears to be doing a very good job off the back of the Irish pack’s recent performances.
O’Connell was one of many names linked to the top job at Munster, due to his long history with his native province, but he has firmly put those rumours to bed.
The Ireland forwards coach was speaking on the Two Johnnies podcast and laughed when asked if there was any chance that he would take over from Johann van Graan next season.
Paul O’Connell insists he won’t be Munster’s head coach next season.
“Well look, I won’t be doing it. I wouldn’t be qualified to do it. I was saying the other day, it’s like a guy who is kind of good at pulling pints being asked to run the bar. They’re two different things,” O’Connell explained.
“I don’t know who will end up doing it. I don’t know [if I will coach Munster down the line]. Munster is a very special thing to me, I’d have to feel very right and very qualified to go and do it.
“I just have the most amazing memories with Munster and I’d hate to ever hurt them by getting involved and not doing a good job of it.”
Will Paul O’Connell manage #Munster?
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— The 2 Johnnies (@the2johnnies) January 6, 2022
No indication as of yet who could take the reins at the southern province.
Several big names have been linked to the Munster head coach role, including O’Connell, Ronan O’Gara and Declan Kidney, but none of them currently appear to have any interest in the job.
O’Gara has ruled himself out of taking over at Munster next season, as he insists he is committed to La Rochelle for the next few seasons, while Kidney recently said he was happy at London Irish and refused to be drawn into a conversation about a return to the province.
There are several other names linked to the job, like Racing 92 backs coach Mike Prendergast for example, but again, there is no indication as of yet that the former Munster scrum-half could swap Paris for Limerick.