Six Nations: Vern Cotter says he anticipated rocky Scots road

By Phil GoodladBBC Scotland
Scotland coach Vern Cotter
Vern Cotter's Scotland have suffered four straight Six Nations defeats

Vern Cotter says he always knew his task as head coach of Scotland "was going to be difficult" in the Six Nations but that he's "enjoying" his role.

The Scots host title-chasing Ireland at Murrayfield this weekend looking to avoid a championship whitewash.

"We knew it was going to be difficult," Cotter told BBC Scotland.

"We've had things affect us out with our control and lost momentum through injuries and suspensions."

The New Zealander took over the reins in June 2014, but after an encouraging Autumn Test series, Scotland have lost all four of their Six Nations fixtures to date.

"I'm really enjoying coaching this group," he said. "They're a good bunch of players and a good group of men.

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt
Cotter dismissed reports that the time will come when he will team up with Joe Schmidt to coach New Zealand

"I think it's exciting as there's almost another generation coming through. They're obviously disappointed not to have got a win on the scoreboard, but if we keep working positively towards creating aspects from each part of our game then hopefully we'll get a positive one at the end globally.

"It's given us a good opportunity to look at ourselves and move towards becoming a better team.

"We never expected to change everything because habits are difficult to change, but the guys are working so hard and I believe we're not far away."

Scottish Rugby chief executive Mark Dodson famously targeted lifting the World Cup later this year before Cotter took control.

"Other teams are probably ahead of us in preparation, but this next period from the end of this game to the next game we'll be able work and put things in place," stressed the head coach.

"The big part's done, we've pushed the big rocks home and hopefully things will start moving for us."

Cotter also dismissed reports in some newspapers that he and countryman Joe Schmidt are in line to take over the All Blacks as a "dream team" coaching pair.

However, Cotter did say that his friend and Ireland coach Schmidt could take charge of New Zealand in the future.

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