Eddie Jones has revealed he will be back in rugby ‘very shortly’ after his second spell in charge of Australia came to a disastrous end last month.
The 63-year-old resigned last Sunday from his head coach role less than 12 months into a five-year deal after the Wallabies failed to reach the knockout stages of the Rugby World Cup for the first time in the history of the tournament.
Jones took charge of the Barbarians for their 49-26 defeat against Wales on Saturday and suggested he did not plan to remain away from rugby for too long.
‘A hundred per cent, hundred per cent […] very shortly, very shortly,’ he replied when asked if he would return to coaching after leaving the Wallabies.
Jones was welcomed back to Australia amid much fanfare after being sacked by the RFU in December last year, following a run of just seven wins five wins from 12 Tests in 2022.
Eddie Jones has revealed he will be back in rugby ‘very shortly’ after leaving the Wallabies
The 63-year-old resigned from his Australia role less than 12 months into a five-year deal
Jones returned to Australia earlier this year, taking over from Dave Rennie on a £2.4million contract that ran until 2027
Rugby Australia boss Hamish McLennan hailed Jones as the ideal man to lead the national team against the British and Irish Lions in 2025 and in the Rugby World Cup on home soil two years later.
The plan backfired spectacularly as Jones won just two of his nine Tests in charge and reportedly held talks with the Japanese federation over their head coach role.
Jones denied speculation he met with Japan bosses prior to the tournament in France, although reports in Asia suggest he was on the cusp of returning to the Brave Blossoms, whom he coached between 2012 and 2015.
On quitting the Wallabies, Jones told The Sydney Morning Herald: ‘I gave it a run. Sometimes you have to eat s*** for others to eat caviar further down the track.’
Speaking last week, the 63-year-old said the reason he walked away from his role was that Rugby Australia officials didn’t share the vision he had for the team and the sport.
‘I went in with a plan and had a commitment from Rugby Australia what that looked like,’ he said.
‘When the unity of where we were going wasn’t the same – not because of the lack of desire from Rugby Australia but there’s other forces at play – then the only thing I could do was resign.’
The Wallabies won just two of their nine Tests under Jones this year
Australia were knocked out in the group stages of the Rugby World Cup for the first time
Jones said he wanted to change the system, which was one of the key reasons he picked such an inexperienced World Cup squad.
But officials didn’t see his vision.
‘Obviously, the results are disappointing, but I went in there with a plan to change Australian rugby, which not only involves the team but the system to put it together.
‘When you’ve had 20 years of unsuccessful rugby, that’s because of the system. I went in with a plan of how to change the system and that’s unable to be changed.
‘I felt my job would be compromised for the next four years, which I wasn’t prepared to do.’
The former England coach, however, insisted the Wallabies’ future may not as bleak as their dismal World Cup showing suggested.
‘They’ll be alright, mate,’ he said.
‘Those players are going to be much better because they’ve had experience, they’ve had a tough World Cup campaign and sometimes you need that.
Jones expects the Wallabies to be competitive when the British and Irish Lions land on Australian shores in 18 months
‘It’s given them a bit more resilience, a bit more work ethic, and there’s good young players there, so I think they’ll be fine, mate.’
And Jones expects the Wallabies to be competitive when the British and Irish Lions land on Australian shores in 18 months.
‘It’ll be huge, be huge,’ he said.
‘Australia’s a proud sporting nation and when they’re not doing well, everything’s bad. Not dissimilar to England. But a little bit success and it’ll go up – and the Lions is a huge series.’