Leeds Carnegie director of rugby Stuart Lancaster has been appointed England's new head of elite player development.
Lancaster will end a 16-year association with Leeds on June 1 to replace Conor O’Shea, who is leaving the Rugby Football Union for a position with the English Institute of Sport.
The RFU clarified that Lancaster’s appointment does not affect the job offer of Academy head coach made to Brian Ashton when he was replaced as England supremo by Martin Johnson.
RFU elite director of rugby Rob Andrew said: “The only change we have made is to remove Conor’s old job title of director of the national academy and replace it with head of elite player development so it more accurately reflects the role.
“Stuart will be directly responsible for all the administration and elite player development processes, which help identify young talent from the age of 13.
“He will also be responsible for the overall management of the Under-18, Under-20, Sevens and England Saxons representative sides, as well as bringing a wealth of coaching experience across the programme.
“Stuart’s appointment does not affect the offer to Brian Ashton as head coach of the National Academy, and these discussions are continuing.”
Lancaster has been in charge at Headingley for the last two seasons and was previously head of the club’s Academy, helping develop England hopefuls like Jordan Crane and Danny Care.
As director of rugby, Lancaster won promotion to the Guinness Premiership in 2007 but could not keep Leeds in the top flight this season. His final game in charge will be against Wasps on Saturday.
“It has been a very difficult decision for me to leave Leeds Carnegie,” he said.
“The club has been a huge part of my life. I was here when the club was formed 16 years ago and I have given my all as a player, as captain, as academy manager and now as director of rugby.
“I can think of no other role I would have left the club for. However, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it allows to me to work and coach at the top end of the international game, developing senior and young players alike to play for England.”