Michael Cheika will not coach French giants Stade Français next season, it was revealed on Monday
The Australian, took over as director of rugby at the Parisian club at the start of the 2010/11 season after spending five years at Leinster, will not be offered an extension of his two-year contract although it has not yet been determined if he will stay on in another capacity.
“It was decided this morning (Monday) that Michael Cheika will no longer coach the professional team of Stade Francais next season,” a source close to the Top 14 club told AFP.
Despite having one of the biggest budgets in France at his disposal, Cheika has failed to revive Stade Français’s fortunes. The 119-year-old club finished seventh in this season’s Top 14, missing out on play-off spot for the third successive season.
The move does not come as surprise as reports have emerged over the last few weeks of the strained relationship between Cheika and a number of players. Reports have also suggested that the Heineken Cup-winning coach was no longer on speaking terms with assistant coach Christophe Laussucq.
After a run of inconsistent results culminating in a demoralising 25-9 loss to now-relegated Brive in March, several players took Cheika to task over some of his decisions, later also complaining to president Thomas Savare, at the helm since Max Guazzini stood down last June.
Cheika has been linked with coach-less Australian Super Rugby franchise the Western Force.