Mark McCall: Saracens director of rugby signs contract extension

Mark McCall
Mark McCall has led Saracens to four Premiership titles

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall has committed his future to the club by signing a contract extension to 2022.

McCall's previous deal was due to expire in 2019, but he has often stated his desire to stay with the club rather than move to an international role.

Assistant coach Alex Sanderson has also agreed a new deal, ruling him out of being England's next defence coach.

Saracens won their fourth Premiership title last weekend, defeating Exeter 27-10 at Twickenham.

All four of those Premiership titles have been masterminded by Northern Irishman McCall, who has led Saracens since 2010.

Scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth, a key part of their title victories, said McCall drives the standards at Allianz Park.

"He's meticulous in what he does. He doesn't waver from his belief about what we need to be good at and our standards that we set," Wigglesworth told the Rugby Union Weekly Podcast.

"He's the standard-bearer of everything we do, and he's relentless with it. He is all about effort all of the time, and he's also a very clever guy as well.

"He's got some coaching CV, and I don't think he's ever going to be short of offers, but hopefully he isn't going anywhere soon."

The extension seems to rule him out of replacing Joe Schmidt as Ireland head coach, with the New Zealander expected to leave the post after next year's Rugby World Cup.

McCall should also be one of the favourites to succeed Eddie Jones as England boss, with Jones set to depart in 2021, although the RFU or IRFU would now have to pay considerable compensation to buy the Ulsterman out of his new contract.

Meanwhile, after Andy Farrell and Paul Gustard left Saracens to join the England set-up, Sanderson had been an option to replace the outgoing Gustard in Jones' backroom team.

However the former England forward will be staying in North London, with McCall tipping Sanderson to eventually replace him as director of rugby.

Other Saracens coaches Phil Morrow, Kevin Sorrell, Joe Shaw, Ian Peel and Dan Vickers have also agreed new deals.

"It's great news that they have all re-signed," said chairman Nigel Wray.

"They're a team within a team, a group of friends together - they're my friends."

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