S.R.U. mum on new coach's salary

The Chief Executive Officer of the Samoa Rugby Union, Faleomavaega Vincent Fepuleai, has refused to reveal the salary for the new National 7s coach. 

Faleomavaega was asked whether the Muliagatele Brian Lima, who was this week appointed as the team’s head coach, would be receiving the same salary as the Union paid the previous coach, Sir Gordon Tietjens. 

But the C.E.O. dismissed the question, saying it is not "something to reveal to the public."

"That is something for us (S.R.U.) to discuss with the coach," said Faleomavaega.

"There is no need to reveal to the public. Whatever our union can afford, is what we will offer to our new head coach."

Sir Gordon’s salary was a matter of considerable controversy and speculation during his tenure, which ended earlier this year. A former Manu Samoa star and lawyer, Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu said of the Kiwi in an interview with Planet Rugby: “The most expensive coach we have ever had turned out to be the absolute worst.”

But asked whether the S.R.U. were confident in their selection, Faleomavaega said simply, "yes."

Faleomavaega also confirmed that the selection of the new Manu Samoa coaches was not influenced by World Rugby. 

"We had a panel who made the final decision on the selection of our coaches, and the newly appointed coaches were thoroughly reviewed and they both meet the criteria needed for the positions,” he said. 

As for the Head Coach of the Manu Samoa XV's team, Mapusua Seilala Mapusua, Faleomavaega said they are confident that he's the right man for the job despite a lack of coaching experience. 

"Mapusua met all the criteria and we believe he is the right man for the job,” he said. 

The Manu Samoa XV will likely have a match either in July or August next year, said Mavaega. 

"Because of COVID-19, it's really hard to find time for a tournament. We are still discussing with World Rugby, as you are all aware that it's hard because most of the countries of the world, so it's really hard to have tournaments. 

"But our focus is for our team to qualify for the Rugby World Cup in 2023 and most likely we will have a match against Tonga either here or in Tonga to find out who will qualify for the World Cup. 

"So we have a couple of programs lined up to prepare for that and also give an opportunity for our coaches to develop and work on improving our teams."

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