London Irish claim Gloucester had breached Premiership protocols with appointment of George Skivington

George Skivington was recently appointed as head coach of Gloucester
George Skivington was recently appointed as head coach of Gloucester

London Irish has stated that "they are considering options" following the appointment of George Skivington as the new head coach of Gloucester Rugby.

Skivington has been the forwards coach of London Irish since his retirement from playing career and has been contracted with the Exiles until June 2021.

According to a statement released by London Irish, Gloucester did not approach them in securing the services of the 37-year-old which is a breach in Premiership protocols.

Premiership Rugby regulations state that a player or coach cannot be contacted, without permission, if they have more than six months left on their contract and as a result London Irish chief executive Brian Facer has issued a warning.

"To say we are disappointed with Gloucester's announcement is an understatement," said Facer.

"George is well liked and respected at Hazelwood, and it is understandable that we would not want to lose him, especially so close to the resumption of play after the lockdown.

"We also know that he is an ambitious young man who would relish the opportunity of being the head coach of a club someday.

"However, the protocols are clear that a club must be approached in writing when there are more than six months remaining on the relevant contract, regardless of whether it is a player or coach.

"George is under contract with London Irish until June 2021 and has not served us with the required notice period, nor have the terms of his contract been breached.

"More importantly, at no point have we received any proactive communication whatsoever from Gloucester.

"We therefore believe that Gloucester have breached the Premiership Rugby Code of Conduct regarding inducement and approaches to a contracted player, member of coaching staff and other contracted person.

"This is a most serious issue so, accordingly, we are reserving our rights to consider all our options under the Premiership Rugby governance protocols and other avenues of redress."