Leinster Rugby formally confirmed on Monday that Josef Schmidt, Assistant Coach to Clermont Auvergne ASM, will become Head Coach for season 2010/11 and has signed a three year deal…

Schmidt will take over from Michael Cheika, who had previously announced that he would not renew his contract after five highly successful years with the province.

Josef Schmidt, aged 44, has been backs coach in Clermont in combination with fellow New Zealander Vern Cotter and during his spell with the French outfit the club has reached three successive French Championship finals.

He previously coached the Auckland Blues in the Super 14 and Bay of Plenty to win the prized Ranfurly Shield. A former Assistant Coach to the New Zealand Schools team for four seasons, Josef is also a former School Headmaster.

In addition, Schmidt spent a year in Ireland as a player in the early 1990’s when he assisted the Mullingar Club in Leinster.

*Leinster will announce the remainder of the new coaching team in the coming months.