Edinburgh head coach Richard Cockerill did not rule out the idea of moving to top French club Clermont, while explaining his frustrations of coaching in Scotland.

On the back of his side’s defeat in Cardiff, which put paid to any hopes of playing in the Champions Cup next season, the former Leicester and Clermont hooker was in philosophical form on the subject of squad depth and losing players to international duty.

Pointing this was an exceptional season with his top players spending as much time with Scotland as they have with Edinburgh, the defeat condemning them to fifth place in Conference B was not a surprise as his team ran out of steam.

Cockerill said he had not been speaking to Clermont about the coaching role which is vacant for next season, but it would be a move that would give him the squad and budget to challenge among Europe’s elite – a point not missed on an evening when Edinburgh were condemned to the second-string Challenge Cup.

So, has he been talking to Clermont? “No.” Has he still got a job to do at Edinburgh? “I hope so. Ask Mr Dodson about that,” referring to SRU chief executive Mark Dodson.

Do the problems of player depth at Edinburgh make a move to Clermont more attractive? “I suppose so, yes. I don't really have anything to say to that. I am the Edinburgh coach and we are at where we are at.

“I have a contract until 2023 and at this point I’m committed to doing the job I’m doing here,” Cockerill continued.

“We are out of Europe for next year, which is disappointing, but you just have to deal with what's in front of you.

“You just hope that you see more of your internationals. It's impossible for Edinburgh to compete when we lose 13 or 14 guys every time there is a test weekend and with test weekends being as long as they are at the moment. It's just impossible.

“Normally, you would have the Autumn tests and then the players wouldn't be away for eight weeks as they have been. We have been unlucky with injuries. 

“Duhan (van der Merwe), Darcy (Graham) and Blair (Kinghorn) have played two games in the same team together and they are our main strike threat. That's always going to make it difficult.

“Next year, there are supposedly not so many clashes, but we'll see. It's very hard to compete. That's no one's fault, it's just the system that has run this season. Hopefully, moving forward, it will be a little bit less congested.

“Ultimately, we were running out of the depth of player you need to compete. We just haven't got enough players because we've got so many away and so many injured.

“We're back in Wales to play Dragons next Sunday and we will just have to put together a team that we can find. That's just how it is.”

With Scotland playing France on Friday, it will be mean scrabbling round for a matchday squad to face Dragons on Sunday, with lock Andrew Davidson, prop Lee-Roy Atallifo and outside half Charlie Savala added to the injury list in Cardiff.

There is also small matter of a postponed fixture against Benetton to fit in – though there is no relevance left for that match.

A slightly downbeat Cockerill was also keen to look on the positives for this season.

“We have had the opportunity to give guys chances to play,” he said. “We are obviously disrupted for all sorts of reasons, but we will be better for it, better for the guys getting opportunities to play and getting a lot of reps in training.

“The Benetton game is an opportunity for guys to play. We want a true league competition.  I've no idea what's going to happen. Clearly, PRO14 haven't thought about it prior to now so I've no idea.”

With the Rainbow Cup also in uncertain territory who knows what is in store for Edinburgh at the tail end of the season – and whether Cockerill will be here or in France for next season.