MacDonald to join the Blues

By James Perry
  • Auckland

The Blues have announced their coaches for the 2019 season.  Tana Umaga has been given a one-year extension, and Leon MacDonald will be one of his assistants.

Former All Black teammates, Tana Umaga and Leon MacDonald will soon be reunited in the coaching box. 

MacDonald, of Rangitane is excited to take on the new challenge as assistant coach for the Blues over the next three years. "I see a club that is doing everything it can to get things right and it's a massive challenge for me.  I'm really excited by it and looking forward to getting into it," he says.

Umaga is welcoming of MacDonald's attributes and is looking forward to working with him over the next 12 months, "The specialities that he brings, his passion. His level of detail and the high standards that he set for himself and obviously his track record.  I know it's going to be a great improvement in terms of us going forward," he says.

The pair aren't strangers in the coaches box, having assisted Scott Robertson with the NZ Under 20 team who won the world championships in 2015.

Blues CEO, Michael Redman says, "In that regard, it is an existing relationship.  We know that they can hit the ground running and again it is our view that with their shared experiences and backgrounds that they're going to form a very formidable coaching group".