McLaughlin takes up new role at Armagh
Former Ulster coach Brian McLaughlin has cut his ties with the province three years after being moved aside from the top job and is returning to club rugby where he has hooked up with City of Armagh RFC as their coaching consultant.
McLaughlin, who led Ulster to the 2012 Heineken Cup final in his last season in charge, after being brought on board in 2009, remained on in the provincial structure where the former RBAI teacher was the Ulster Schools' Academy coach.
A widely known figure in the local game - who also had a previous stint as Ireland skills coach under Eddie O'Sullivan -McLaughlin's removal ahead of Mark Anscombe's appointment caused huge controversy at the time with the flames being fanned by an infamous Press conference where then Director of Rugby David Humphreys attempted to explain why the Ulsterman was not having his contract renewed.
Now, the Newtownards-born coach has resigned from his role at the Kingspan Stadium to move into coaching consultancy following three years working at schools' level. He will join the off-field structure at the Palace Grounds - for what is thought to be a long-term deal - where Alex McCloy is taking charge for the coming season. Newly returned Ulster flanker Willie Faloon will also be helping out at City of Armagh.
"I'm delighted to take up this new role at City of Armagh RFC," McLaughlin said. "I have been impressed by the current set-up at the club on and off the pitch and I look forward to working with the team of coaches and all the players as we prepare for the season ahead."
Ulster Team Manager, Bryn Cunningham said: "Brian has made a significant impact on all aspects of rugby in Ulster. I would like to thank him for his contribution to Ulster Rugby and to wish him well in his new venture."