# Andy Friend

Last month
February 2023
# succession plan
Connacht poised to announce new head coach
Andy Friend said he understood that an announcement on his successor is imminent.
January 2023
# Going nowhere
Friend scoffs at reports that Bundee Aki could be on his way to Munster
The Ireland star had been contracted to the end of the World Cup but signed an extension some time ago.
# Worry
Connacht's Prendergast emerges as injury concern for Six Nations
The 22-year-old made his Irish debut off the bench against Fiji in November.
# Waiting Game
Connacht head coach Wilkins yet to be interviewed to take over from Friend
The current director of rugby is set to depart in the summer of 2023.
# A Friend in need
Hansen and Bealham back for Connacht as Sharks send their second-string
Andy Friend’s side are 13th in the URC table and badly need a win.
Andy Friend calls for Connacht to 'front up and start winning games'
The province sit 13th in the URC table and face an uphill battle to reach the play-offs.
Last year
# Team news
Gibson-Park and Sexton to make first Leinster start of the season together, Connacht missing key trio
Mack Hansen, Finlay Bealham and Bundee Aki all miss Sunday’s trip to the RDS.
# Preview
Beleaguered Brive up next as Connacht look to shape season in Challenge Cup
Andy Friend’s side are in action in France tonight.
# Optimism
Friend thrilled Connacht's squad depth strengthened by Challenge Cup games
“We’ve got to be brave enough to use it. There would have been a lot of people scratching their heads wondering what are we doing.”
# mission
Andy Friend gets priorities straight as he bids to bow out with a bang at Connacht
His four summer signings from Leinster start together for the first time against Newcastle Falcons in the Challenge Cup later today.
# Challenge Cup
Connacht to rest Irish internationals during European pool games
The province kick-off their Challenge Cup campaign against Newcastle Falcons on Saturday.
# Heading Home
Friend hoping to end time at Connacht on a high
The Connacht director of rugby says he hasn’t been asked to help with the search for his successor.
# Farewell
Connacht confirm Andy Friend will leave at the end of the season
The popular Australian will depart after five seasons in charge.
# missed opportunities
'We are making life so hard for ourselves' - Andy Friend says Connacht must improve
Head coach happy with win against Ospreys ‘but not as happy with the performance’.
# friendly advice
'We needed that win but there is still more in us'
Andy Friend believes Connacht can kick on from tonight’s victory over the Scarlets.
# Next Job
Connacht turn their thoughts to Leinster after getting off the mark
Andy Friend’s team defeated Munster on Friday to record their first win of the season.
# Squad
The Connacht depth chart: Back three boost and arrivals from Leinster
The western province had hoped to sign a new tighthead prop ahead of this season.
# Change Of Plan
Andy Friend explains reasons behind switch to Connacht Director of Rugby role
In advance of the 2021-22 season, there were a number of additions to the Australian’s senior coaching ticket.
# new title
Friend moves to DOR role as Connacht re-jig their coaching staff
Peter Wilkins is the province’s new head coach.
# Last Hurrah
Farewells and glimpses of the future as Connacht wrap up against Zebre
It has been a disappointing URC season for Andy Friend’s side but they can finish with a home win.
# Grind
'You can never doubt the fight and energy that we have within the group'
Connacht head coach Andy Friend insists his players will only get better after rare victory away in South Africa.
Connacht have one eye on next season, but Friend will demand response after Champions Cup exit
The province are in Johannesburg to take on the Emirates Lions today.
# Rugby
Andy Friend: 'Let’s be the first team to have a clean sweep against the South African sides'
The Connacht coach has eye on next season but also sets lofty target.
# Bouncing Back
Connacht wait for one more signing but Friend is 'really happy' with his squad
Captain and out-half Jack Carty is hopeful the players can cut out their habit of making consecutive errors.
# High tackle
'I thought it was a yellow' - Connacht boss Friend agrees with big referee call
The Connacht head coach will take some encouragement despite the defeat to Leinster.
# up against it
Friend calls on Connacht's internationals to set the tone across Leinster double-header
The province host Leo Cullen’s side in Galway in the first leg of the Champions Cup round of 16 this weekend.
# Derby Day
High stakes for Connacht as Friend's side hope to deliver first blow in Leinster trilogy
Connacht and Leinster will play each other three times over the next four weeks, starting with tonight’s URC clash in Galway.
# signings
'Everyone will be saying he's the next Mack Hansen' - Connacht excited about additions
Andy Friend is enthused by Leinster players deciding to switch to Connacht.
# harsh lessons
'It was pretty embarrassing' - Connacht must bounce back to save URC season
Head coach Andy Friend and club captain Jarrad Butler were honest about the defeat in Edinburgh.
# heading west
David Hawkshaw latest Leinster player to make the move to Connacht
The Leinster back will move to The Sportsground ahead of next season.
# Signed Up
Connacht captain Jarrad Butler signs two-year contract extension
The back row is staying at The Sportsground until at least the end of the 2023/24 season.
# Go West
Connacht announce new contract renewals for Burke and Porch
The province are also set to make further announcements on the squad for next season in the coming days.
# Crunch time
'We are fighters': Connacht know they must bounce back as play-off fight looms
Andy Friend’s side shipped 56 points in a shocking collapse against Edinburgh.
# reinforcements
'We call them our bouncers' - Friend praises impact of Connacht bench in Stormers win
It’s the second week in a row Connacht have come from ten points adrift to secure victory.
# Empty-Handed
Friend rues lack of control as Connacht's slump continues with fourth defeat
‘At this stage, with every loss, we’re making life ever more tricky.’
# warning shot
Andy Friend: 'If we play like that against Ulster, they'll put 60 or 70 on us’
The Connacht coach was reacting to his side’s 42-20 defeat to Glasgow this afternoon.
# winning habit
Friend doesn't want Connacht to limp into Champions Cup knockout stages
Connacht will qualify automatically on Friday night unless Castres get a bonus point win away to English champions Harlequins
# stepping up
'He’s been outstanding all year' - Friend backs Marmion for Ireland recall
The scrum-half was last capped at Test level in November 2020.
# Setback
Mack Hansen to miss Connacht's Champions Cup clash with Leicester Tigers
The winger is unavailable after aggravating a calf injury in training.
All time
Friend hails 'really positive step' of URC appointing referee manager
Former Test referee Tappe Henning was announced in the role earlier this month.