Worcester Warriors: Dean Ryan named director of rugby

Worcester Warriors have named former England number eight Dean Ryan as their new director of rugby.

The 46-year-old former Gloucester and Bristol coach was part of Scotland's forwards coaching set-up under Scott Johnson during this year's Six Nations.

He will take over at Sixways after this season's final Premiership game against London Welsh on 4 May.

Ryan's arrival follows the exit of head coach Richard Hill, whose departure was confirmed on Tuesday night.

Former England scrum-half Hill, 51, took over at Worcester in May 2010, guiding the Warriors to promotion back to the Premiership at the end of his first season in charge.

Worcester achieved a 10th-place finish on their return to the top flight, but the club's progress has since been slower than expected.

Despite an overhaul of his backroom team last summer, they have failed to make the play-offs and the Heineken Cup for the second year running - and Hill departed with the Warriors ninth in the table, with two matches left to play.

Worcester have lost all 10 Premiership away matches this season - and their overall form in the second half of the campaign has been poor.

Their only win in nine league games since Christmas came at home to Wasps on 1 March, although they have always been a safe distance from the threat of relegation.

Ryan, who won four England caps as a player, had spells at Saracens, Wasps, Newcastle and Bristol.

He then coached Bristol and Gloucester, leaving Kingsholm in 2009 after their Premiership title near miss.

But he will take charge of a Worcester squad that already appears to have done most of its summer trading.

England prop Matt Mullan, former England stand-off Andy Goode, utility back Joe Carlisle are all joining Wasps, England Saxons flanker Matt Kvesic is Gloucester-bound, Scotland winger Nikki Walker is to return north of the border with Edinburgh and Blair Cowan is leaving for London Irish

And Worcester have already made eight signings.

Ignacio Mieres will arrive from Exeter, along with fellow stand-off Paul Warwick from Stade Francais and Bedford winger Paul Stephenson.

And there are so far five additions in the pack, Argentine duo Leonardo Senatore (Toulon) and hooker Agustin Creevy (Montpellier), who are both arriving from France, flanker Mike Williams from South African side Blue Bulls, Tongan prop Ofa Fanga'anuku from Glasgow Warriors and Cornish Pirates prop Paul Andrew.