Johann Van Graan made headlines for the wrong reasons before Munster and Ulster's game at the weekend.
Johann Van Graan will leave Munster at the end of the season.
The Munster head coach gave a tv interview prior to his side's win on Saturday and was very short in his answers. He drew criticism from the panel on television, fans and commenters at large. Peter Stringer suggested that Van Graan no longer wanted to be in his position, but that wasn't a unanimous opinion.
Journalist Gerry Thornley thinks Van Graan didn't fully reflect himself in that interview.
"I don't entirely agree with Peter Stringer's assessment that this shows his heart is not really in it," Thornley said.
"What little I do know about Johann Van Graan, I don't know him on a personal level at all, but what I do know from talking to people is that he's a very honourable man. I would be amazed if he doesn't see through his contract to the end of the season."
"He'll want to sign off as best as he can."
Munster won the game despite Simon Zebo's red card. Zebo received a red card early in the first half. Peter O'Mahony injured himself before the game began. It was a great result on a difficult night in Limerick. It was a much needed result after a despairing display against Connacht the prior week.
Replacing Van Graan before the end of the season is an option.
"I would argue that causes more upheaval than anything else. In one sense, at least he's being honourable. He's given them six months notice. He is moving on. At no point did he say I'm staying when he wasn't. Unlike his predecessor Rassie Erasmus who did say repeatedly yes I'm staying when all along he already knew he was going back to South Africa.
"We should bear that in mind as well."
Munster isn't an easy club to work for. It's a beacon of rugby. The home of rugby in Ireland for many fans. But while the club is iconic, the structures behind the scene might be chaotic. Munster rely on private financiers to sign big-name players. Damien De Allende and RG Snyman don't come cheap.
Because of that, there is potential for influence from those outside the coaching staff.
"I would be very surprised if Stuart Lancaster or Leo Cullen have any outside interference. I'd say they're very much given a free hand to select, pick and coach the team. There's a specialist there in Guy Easterby who looks after the contracts. I would venture that it's a smoother running machine, more harmonious off the pitch than Munster is.
"When you have a body like that, they perhaps want more influence on things that wouldn't necessarily be healthy."
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