Ronan O’Gara has committed himself to La Rochelle until 2027.
The former Munster and Ireland out-half had been linked with the role as England head coach prior to the RFU’s decision this week to relieve Eddie Jones of the job but he signalled his intent to stay with the Top 14 club in his column last Friday.
O’Gara stated in that piece that he was happy personally and professionally in his current post as Director of Rugby and added that a new contract was in the process of being signed and sealed with the club.
A five-year contract nails his colours to the mast.
The club won its first ever major trophy under O’Gara’s watch when defeating Leinster in the final of last season’s Heineken Champions Cup and chairman Vincent Merling has expressed his confidence that similar days will come in the future.
Managing director Pierre Venayre stated that the decision to extend their partnership with O’Gara was “obvious to us” while sporting director Robert Mohr added that the club has found the right blend to allow the club to achieve success.
The Cork man and his family are well-settled in France, which is why he admitted it was an ‘easy decision’ to extend his stay.
“My family and I feel very good here,” O’Gara told the club’s website on Tuesday. “Work-life balance is very important to me. Vincent, Pierre and Robert let me know that they wanted to continue this adventure with me and I am absolutely delighted. I love my group.
“Gradually, we are changing status and I am convinced that this is only the beginning. And then the supporters here are incredible, this passion which animates them, this support which they have shown me. Yes, I have to say, it all made my decision easy. It's a great responsibility but also a lot of pride to continue here.”
La Rochelle begin their defence of the Champions Cup trophy at home to Northampton Saints this weekend and they currently sit fourth in the Top 14.