Home Rugby Administration Fee negotiations halts appointments of assistants

Fee negotiations halts appointments of assistants


Brenden Nel writing for SuperSport.com reports that Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer’s appointment of his management team is at an impasse after the Blue Bulls Company demanded a big fee to release several of their coaching staff to the national union.

Brenden Nel

It is no secret that Meyer has wanted to appoint a team that he trusts and has worked with in the past, but with several of them in contracts across the country, the negotiations surrounding their release has taken a lot longer than expected.

SuperSport.com can reveal that the Bulls have asked for transfer fees for all four their employees requested to be released to the South African Rugby Union, with SARU chief executive Jurie Roux and Bulls CEO Barend van Graan chipping away at the details over the past few weeks.

According to sources, the Bulls Board of Directors has asked for a R1-million transfer fee each for forwards coach Johan van Graan and fitness guru Basil Carzils, while asking for R250 000 each for defence coach John McFarland and backline coach Ricardo Loubscher.

The quartet are set to form the basis of Meyer’s coaching team against England in the June test matches and are likely to be joined by kicking coach Louis Koen and a number of consultants, including former WP Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus.

The reason for the difference in asking price for the officials is that McFarland is seen as a Meyer loyalist while Loubscher is contracted to the Vodacom Cup team and therefore not as high profile as the other two.

Van Graan is currently the forwards and attack coach for the Super Rugby team, while Carzils is regarded as one of the best fitness experts in world rugby and has also helped out Namibia in the Rugby World Cup in the past.

Meyer was appointed on January 26 but did his presentation to SARU’s executive last week, getting approval for his choice of management team. He did, however give his list of preferred candidates when he was appointed.

While SARU are keen to get the best management team in place, one can understand the Bulls reluctance to let go of their own intellectual property. To lose your defensive coach, forwards and attacking coach and fitness expert in the middle of a Vodacom Super Rugby campaign is not an easy thing to let happen, and to replace them with staff that are of a similar caliber will take some doing.

SARU general manager: Communications Andy Colquhoun declined to comment on the transfer fees, saying only that the national body would make an announcement when the management team had been appointed.

Bulls CEO Barend van Graan echoed these sentiments, saying only that negotiations were at a sensitive stage.

Meyer’s first test in charge will be against England on June 9 in Durban.


  1. Reply to Kevin_rack @ 2:30 am:

    Loubscher I understand.

    He needs an off white hued coach and none of quality are willing to help him out (note to Alistair Coetzee), so he has to look elsewhere. Loubscher is a protege of Pieter Rossouw so he should add value.

    I thought Jacques Nienaber was on his shopping list initially… is it possible the Stormers refused to release him…

    I mean where else can he look?

    McFarland has seen the Bulls have an excellent defence…

    This year they have conceded the second least points of any side…

  2. Reply to DavidS @ 9:41 am:

    I have no issue with him picking his coaching team from people he knows and can work with.

    What will be interesting is his selection policy and how he gets along with “different” players to his “family squad style”
    He usually takes ages to build a squad and results could suffer initially but if he stays long enough and sticks to his guns he will build a squad that could dominate for some time. HOWEVER the pressure of being Bok Coach will not give him the luxury to take his time and I wonder how he will cope with that!

    Good luck to him in any case Please not Spies as Captain :im a idiot:

  3. Reply to JT_BOKBEFOK! @ 9:46 am:

    Sounds right to me.
    We’ll always have the problem with
    contracted coaches and players.
    Maybe he can overcome the hue problem
    by making Chili captain – should please
    the ANC no end.

  4. Reply to Boertjie @ 12:01 pm:

    With ball in hand I would prefer Spies, AJ or even Kankakski
    In defense I would prefer Vermeulen – however i would think of these guys only in form of back-up…

    I guess all in all I would think outside the box and go for Josh Strauss at 8 and have Burger at 7 with Brussouw at 6

  5. Reply to Boertjie @ 12:01 pm:

    Just the Cape media.

    Up here it’s Spies…

    JT you make a good point about Heyneke taking time to build a squad.

    I think though that as long as he’s honest the SA rugby public WILL give him some time to get it right.

    Recollect that when Strontli took over he said he should be judged on the outcome of the world cup. He WAS given the benefit of the doubt. Even in that first season despite us losing to the Kiwis and Aussies people kept saying that the side shows “promise” and thought his bizarre selection policies were just testing of combinations and players.

    If Heyneke is open about building a squad that will dominate world rugby for ten years I strongly believe fans will forgive one or even two years of building up if they see a Bulls style dynasty emerge.

    If he suggests a Dawie Snyman / 1980’s WP domination of world rugby he will have sold the Cape media to his vision.


    I would mention that Derrick Minnie is very much knocking on Brussouw’s door for steals and he can carry! Secondly Josh can play 7 and 8.

    Derrick Minnie and Siya Kolisi are very much the future of openside flank…

  6. Reply to DavidS @ 3:13 pm:

    We still have issues in the front-row (prop), centre and Full-back IMO. No-one standing out as 1st choice yet.

    SA have enough hookers, some good promising locks, more than enough able back-rowers, a few very good 9’s, at least 4 very good 10’s and enough wingers…

  7. Reply to Kevin_rack @ 2:30 am:

    McFarland = Excellent defensive coach behind the Bulls resurgence…

    Loubscher = The neccessary POC required under South African law! However he filled in as back’s coach for the Bulls between Todd Louden and Slaptjips…

  8. Im typing under logan’s ID, I’m just to lazy to log in. So it Aldo, not Logan.

    Im rather worried about the Bulls if we lose all of the above, Loubscher is ok, but the other 3 combined with the loss of Heyneke, I think there are some very very worried guys in the halls of Loftus.

    Hopefully we get the transfer fees and are able to replace them with similar brilliance, allthough Im not sure where too find them.

    I haven’t blogged in a while, so here goes on Bulls stormers game. What a game, and I was very impressed with the Bulls, but congrats to the Stormers on pulling through. It is a building season for the Bulls and they played really well, allthough they showed a lack of composure under pressure, which is to be expected with the young guys. I hope they grow, but this will be the Stormers year of sa teams. Great win against the highlanders.

  9. dawie dawie dawie, when last did the Lions win? Oh right I remember, you guys are awesome for beating a bok laden province and sharks team to win the CC! Shyte here I thought the superrugby comp meant something, oh and winning. Dont worry dawie, keep the flame burning in jhb, no one else will.

  10. how do you keep a Lions supporter happy? You give him one CC every 13 years, it will keep him happy for a long time to come.

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