Sale Sharks: John Mitchell to oversee first-team affairs

Chief executive Steve Diamond has confirmed that John Mitchell will oversee first-team affairs at Sale Sharks for the rest of the season.

The 48-year-old took part in his first coaching session on Tuesday.

Diamond told BBC Radio Manchester: "John is in charge and he'll be assisted by the coaching staff, of which I will be one of them for the short term, just for a handover."

Sale are bottom of the Premiership with one win from their first nine games.

Mitchell, who had a spell as player-coach with the Sharks during the late 1990s, had previously been helping the club

He last week, after being cleared of misconduct charges by the club, to take his position on Sale's rugby strategy management board.

Among those assisting the former New Zealand coach at the Salford City Stadium will be ex-Scotland international Bryan Redpath, who was last month.

Mitchell has called for the Sale squad to show more desire to get out of their current predicament - they are five points adrift at the bottom of the table.

He said: "The club is resourced extremely well and unfortunately we're in this situation, so the reality is that we've got to sustain Premiership rugby.

"We've got the material here. The players have got the talent. We've got to find 22 blokes that are prepared to have that collective will from this point onwards, in order to move forward."

Diamond, who had been following is confident that Mitchell's arrival will bring an improvement in results.

He added: "To have somebody of his calibre heading up the rugby is a great coup for the club.

"He brings a directness and a vast knowledge. Everything that you'd expect of a top-class person in his position to bring, he brings."

Mitchell's first game at the helm is against Northampton on Friday.