Former Ireland captain Paul O’Connell has been named as forwards coach by Top 14 side Stade Francais.
The 38-year-old has signed a two-year-deal to work under former Springboks boss Heyneke Meyer at the Paris club, leaving his role in Ireland’s Under-20s set-up.
Former British and Irish Lions lock O’Connell will link up with ex-Munster team-mates Donnacha Ryan and Simon Zebo in joining Stade.
The 108-cap ex-Ireland star’s move will prove another boost to Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) long-term plans to develop top-level home-grown coaches, with Ronan O’Gara impressing at New Zealand’s Crusaders after a stint with Racing 92.
“I am really pleased to welcome Paul to the Stade Francais Paris family,” said head coach Meyer.
“Paul will bring his value and experience to our coaching team through his proven leadership abilities and his tactical and technical skill.”
O’Connell said: “I’m really happy to be in Paris and to be able to work at this great club alongside Heyneke Meyer. I am excited about the challenge here.”