England have appointed former New Zealand head coach John Mitchell as their new defence coach as they continue preparing for next year’s World Cup, according to a report on BBC Sport.

The Rugby Football Union were locked in negotiations with Mitchell’s current club Blue Bulls in South Africa and finally reached a compensation agreement with the side.

Gallo Images/Getty Images Sport

The RFU are reportedly paying £200,000 to secure the services of Mitchell, who is very highly regarded by England head coach Eddie Jones.

The 54-year-old will leave his South African club and begin working with his new team as soon as possible.

He said:

I will use all my experience and focus to bring the necessary clarity and confidence to the players from a defensive perspective.

Jones is eager for his side to quickly turn defence into attack and it is understood that he is hoping that Mitchell can help his side to do exactly that as the World Cup nears.