Defence coach Edwards' new France deal 'excellent news' for Ibanez

France team manager Raphael Ibanez said on Friday defence coach Shaun Edwards signing a new contract until 2027 was "excellent news."

Earlier, the French Rugby Federation confirmed Edwards, 56, who took over the role alongside head coach Fabien Galthie following the 2019 Rugby World Cup after 11 trophy-ladden years with Wales, had agreed to new terms.

"Concerning Shaun Edwards' future, I think it's excellent news for France," Ibanez told reporters.

"What he brings to the players on a daily basis, he has put his stamp in a specific way in line with his character, his charisma and competence,"  he added.

The deals of Ibanez and Galthie, who will lead Les Bleus for a final time this year in Sunday's Autumn Nations Series Test after wins over Australia and South Africa earlier this month, are up after next year's World Cup.

"Things will get done in due course, over the next weeks," Ibanez said.

"Let's get this series finished first," he added.

On Friday, Edwards told newspaper the Daily Mail he had agreed to stay in the position until after the 2027 World Cup in Australia.

"I'm delighted to use this column to announce that I've signed a contract extension with France until the 2027 World Cup," Edwards said.

"Fabien Galthie asked in September if I'd be interested in staying on for a few more years and the FFR followed up by putting a long-term contract in front of me," he added.

Edwards won three Six Nations titles during his time with Wales after a hugely succesful playing career in rugby league with home-town club Wigan, which included nine Challenge Cup successes.

The Englishman started his coaching career with union side Wasps, where he claimed the European Cup and English Premiership.

"People have asked if I wanted to join England but there was no offer on the table," Edwards said.

"I went for a walk down the River Thames with Bill Sweeney, the RFU CEO, last year but there's not been much conversation since.

"It's not for me to push that," he added.

Edwards has helped France to second in the world rankings and Les Bleus can seal a record 13th straight Test win with victory over Japan on Sunday before hosting next year's World Cup.

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