Eddie Jones starts moves for England coaching team
New England head coach Eddie Jones appears to be closing in on finalising his coaching support team.
Saracens defence and forwards coach Paul Gustard is considering an offer to be one of Jones' assistants, while current Bristol coach and former England captain Steve Borthwick is also firmly on the radar.
The Rugby Football Union remain tight-lipped about possible identities of those who will work with Jones, but time appears to have run out for England's World Cup trio Andy Farrell, Graham Rowntree and Mike Catt.
They were head coach Stuart Lancaster's right-hand men during a dismal World Cup when England became a first host nation in the tournament's 28-year history to bow out before the quarter-final stage.
Lancaster paid an inevitable price and departed the RFU last month, with Australian Jones taking over as England's first overseas head coach.
Saracens rugby director Mark McCall revealed after his team's 45-10 European Champions Cup victory over Oyonnax on Sunday that 39-year-old Gustard had been offered an assistant coach's role with England.
McCall, speaking in France after Saracens recorded a third successive bonus point victory in Champions Cup Pool One, said: "Paul has been made an offer to become an assistant coach with England.
"He is considering the offer, and I'm sure there will be some dealings between the RFU and ourselves over the next 24-48 hours.
"When there is anything more to add we will announce in due course."
Jones started his job at Twickenham earlier this month after agreeing a four-year contract, and his first game in charge will be the RBS 6 Nations Championship clash against Scotland at Murrayfield on February 6.
Gustard has been an integral part of Saracens' success under McCall, including winning the Aviva Premiership title last season and being a consistent force in Europe.
He played for Leicester during the 1990s, making almost 100 appearances for the Tigers and featuring during the 2001 European Cup final victory against Stade Francais in Paris.
Gustard left Leicester in 2002 to join London Irish, making 98 appearances in four years for the Exiles, then headed to Saracens, where he moved into coaching after his playing days ended.