Former Connacht coach Michael Bradley confirmed as new Zebre boss
Michael Bradley has been named as the new Zebre head coach after a glowing endorsement from Conor O'Shea.
There will be two Italians teams competing in the Guinness PRO12 this season after the Italian rugby federation (FIR) took over ownership of Zebre recently.
Zebre had informed the FIR that they will not compete in the competition next season. Reports in recent weeks have claimed that a number of players haven't been paid and the squad has yet to meet up for pre-season training.
Former Ireland scrum-half Bradley was involved in the Georgia national team coaching staff for the last four years.
A statement from the Italian Rugby Federation read: "With the appointment of the new Chief Executive Officer, the composition of the franchise’s technical staff was also defined, the guidance of which was entrusted to Michael Bradley, the 55-year-old Irishman, [who] until last season [was] assistant coach of the Georgian national team, currently ranked twelfth in World Rugby.
"Bradley, whose name was indicated by Conor O’Shea, CT (commissario tecnico/head coach) of the national team with a view of full technical alignment between Italy and the two PRO12 franchises, will be joined by Carlo Orlandi as coach of the forwards and Alessandro Troncon as Trequartz coach: The pair of Italian technicians, who already assisted the National team during the management of Nick Mallett and Jacques Brunel, came to the Zebra after a long experience with the Italian U20, which ended in June with an historic place in the “top 8″ World Championships."