League titles seem ever more difficult for struggling Harlequins

This season Harlequins have won just seven of twenty-two matches and even lost to relegated side London Irish at home, 35-5. The celebrations of the 2012 Premiership title now seem a distant memory.

Last month it was announced that Director of Rugby John Kingston, will be leaving the club under mutual consent at the end of the season following his seventeen-year spell with the London based side.

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The announcement came just eighty-one days after he signed a new contract extension alongside his head coach Mark Mapletoft and forwards coach Graham Rowntree.

Kingston took over the DOR position following Connor O’Shea’s departure to the Italian National team but prior to this, Kingston had won both the Premiership and the Challenge Cup as head coach.

Harlequins are known to be loyal to their players past and present and this is shown with former Quins player Nick Easter, who left his playing career for a coaching position at the club.

However, prop Joe Marler spoke to the BBC in February voicing his concerns over coaching at the club and alluded to there being no ‘fresh perspective within the coaching set-up and (that) things are quite familiar’

With the players looking to get a new voice from the coaching team, Wanye Smith former New Zealand coach might be looking to re-negotiate a contract with the club. Smith turned down Harlequins two years ago to keep his position with the All Blacks but could make a return to England.

Harlequins do have a very good squad with a minimum of eight international players and should be getting better results than they currently are. Although they have three / four starting England internationals they shouldn’t need to suffer hugely during the Six Nations period and should be able to do better than some of the top sides during that time. Nevertheless, Quins aren’t producing the results that they should be.

Looking ahead to next season, Harlequins need to manage their talent better than they currently have been and utilise on their strengths. With an international forwards coach and the talent, their pack has their scrum has no reason why it can’t be one of the best in the premiership. As for their backs, Mike Brown is sensational under the high ball and Marcus Smith is a star of the future and both alongside Joe Marchent who has been outstanding this season.

The best thing for them over the summer is to re-evaluate, get some fresh ideas into the way they play and start playing more to their advantages.

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