Tigers confirm Loffreda’s appointment

Leicester Tigers chairman Peter Tom has confirmed the appointment of Marcelo Loffreda as the club’s new head coach.

Loffreda, the current Argentina national coach, will arrive at Welford Road after leading the Pumas at the forthcoming Rugby World Cup.

The 47-year-old won 44 caps for Argentina, captaining the side for a spell, and took over as Pumas coach in 2000.

“The name of Leicester Tigers is renowned throughout the rugby world and to be invited to join this great club as head coach was an honour not only for me but also for the people who love rugby in Argentina,” said Loffreda, who watched the Tigers beat Llanelli scarlets in the Heineken Cup semi-final on Saturday.

“Leicester is a club with a wonderful history and has supporters who are passionate about their club.

“I know there is also a squad of players with a hunger and drive to be the best.

“There are some exciting times ahead for us all at Tigers.”

Loffreda will succeed Pat Howard, who is returning home to Australia at the end of the current season to concentrate on his business interests.

Loffreda has been linked with the Tigers post for several months, and was an overwhelming favourite for one of English rugby’s top job.

And he could inherit a Leicester side at the peak of its powers.

The Tigers have already won the EDF Energy Cup this season, while they meet Wasps in next month’s Heineken Cup final and are also contesting the Guinness Premiership title.

“Marcelo has done a marvellous job in taking Argentina to the top ranks of the international game,” said Tom.

“He is recognised as a top-class coach, and has developed a squad of quality players to the point where they have reached number six in the world rankings.

“I have been impressed by his thoughts on the game, his approach to coaching and his ideas on how to take Leicester Tigers forward.
“We look forward to the fresh input from Marcelo, as well as the continued development of the existing staff and players at the club.”

With Howard due to depart at the end of this season, forwards coach Richard Cockerill will take charge of team affairs, assisted by the rest of the Tigers coaching team, until Loffreda’s arrival.

 

365 Digital

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