Shaun Edwards wanted by Cardiff Blues, says chairman Peter Thomas

Shaun Edwards
Shaun Edwards has been Warren Gatland's Wales assistant since January 2008

Chairman Peter Thomas wants former Wasps coach Shaun Edwards to become Cardiff Blues' part-time defence coach.

The Blues chief has put the idea to the Welsh Rugby Union in the hope out-of-contract coach Edwards will accept a combined club and Wales role.

Thomas said: "I would very much like him [Edwards] to come to the Blues."

Edwards left his role as Wasps head coach on Sunday while his Wales contract expired at the end of the World Cup, leaving him a free agent.

The former Great Britain rugby league international has admitted he would consider a coaching role with England in the wake of their disappointing World Cup campaign.

The Welsh have won the 2008 Grand Slam and finished fourth at the 2011 World Cup since Edwards became Wales coach Warren Gatland's part-time right-hand-man in January 2008.

The 45-year-old had helped Wasps win two Heineken Cups and four English Premiership titles in his 10 years at the club before he left following Sunday's 24-13 defeat by Northampton.

Blues benefactor Thomas believes Gatland's Wales assistants should be allocated to Wales' four regions.

Thomas thinks his Welsh region could benefit with Edwards working alongside current coaches Justin Burnell and Gareth Baber.

And he hopes Robin McBryde's dual role with Wales and the Scarlets serves as a precedent.

"I've spoken to the Welsh Rugby Union and registered a very strong interest in Shaun Edwards coming in to do a defensive role," said Thomas.

"He would work alongside both Justin and Gareth.

"I know Warren Gatland would not have a problem with it and I've asked the Welsh Rugby Union to give it very serious consideration.

"We wouldn't have a position full-time at Cardiff Blues for Shaun Edwards and he knows that and he doesn't want that.

"We have a forwards coach, we have a backs coach - we want a defensive coach.

"And the coaching structure of these games is that you do two, maybe three sessions a week.

"I think the national team is the pinnacle. It is the be-all and end-all of rugby. Without a successful national side you haven't got a structure.

"But I also believe that when you add up the Six Nations, the summer tour and the autumn Tests, physically a national coach is probably involved four months a year.

"Now his customer is the regions and I'm absolutely pro the national coaching staff being allocated to the regions.

"And whether it's conditioning coaches, whether it's the backs coach, forwards coach, kicking coach - they all should be allocated to the regions for at least two thirds of the season.

"It'll be beneficial for the coaches of the regions, it'll bring far stronger communications with the national side.

"They've got the time - why aren't they employed in that direction?

"We've seen it with Robin McBryde. We've seen it with Shaun Edwards and Wasps."