Sir Clive Woodward has described the FA's installation of performance guru Dave Reddin as "a great appointment" for football.
Reddin, 44, who was Woodward's right-hand man when England won the 2003 Rugby World Cup and also worked with him at the British Olympic Association, will be the FA's head of performance services and given the task of improving the national teams' record at major tournaments.
One of the issues he is expected to work on is England's poor record in penalty shoot-outs - the reason for exits in six major tournaments since 1990 and the British Olympic men's team last summer. It is the first time the FA has gone out of football to make such a key appointment.
Woodward said: "Dave has been working with me since 1997 at the RFU, the BOA and more recently on coaching software and I believe he is a great appointment for football.
"During the London Olympics [England manager] Roy Hodgson came around to look at our performance service areas and said he was very impressed.
"Dave did an amazing job in rugby and at the Olympics, and he's right up to date with everything going on in sport. And I am sure he will find football very interesting and challenging.
"I am delighted for him and he has my full support and backing."
Reddin will begin work for the FA in February and will be based at St George's Park in Burton, overseeing sports science, medical, performance analysis, psychology and physiotherapy.
He will report into Dan Ashworth, the FA's director of elite development, and his staff will aim to improve the performance of all the England teams and "create new tournament strategies aimed at increasing success", said the FA in a statement.
Reddin said: "I'm delighted to be joining the FA at such an exciting time in its development. The FA is committed to change and to becoming leaders in the football world. With the opening of St George's Park there are new opportunities to enhance and improve all of the services we deliver to our athletes.
"My focus will be on raising the standards and consistency of performance services across all national teams, underpinned by the latest research and innovation. Capturing and translating this knowledge to inform the development of the next generation of coaches will also be a key role."
Ashworth added: "Dave is synonymous with success across a number of sporting disciplines.
"His role is pivotal in the delivery of vital services that support our England teams and the wider game.
"The team at St. George's Park is developing and growing into its environment - but it is important we continue to bring the facilities to life through quality and credible personnel."