Rugby World Cup 2019: Beauden Barrett backs assistant Ian Foster as next All Blacks coach

All Blacks fullback Beauden Barrett has voiced his support for Ian Foster's bid to take over from Steve Hansen as head coach, saying he would like to see "continuity" in the role.

Hansen ended his 16-year association with the team, after New Zealand beat Wales to clinch third-place at the Rugby World Cup.

The All Blacks returned to Auckland from Japan on Tuesday and Barrett said he loved working with assistant coach Foster.

"He's a very intelligent coach, a great team man and hopefully we can have some continuity going forward," said the 28-year-old.

Among the other candidates is Scott Robertson, who led the Crusaders to three successive Super Rugby titles, and former Wales coach Warren Gatland, who is heading home to coach the Chiefs in Super Rugby.

Gatland's agreement to take the British & Irish Lions to South Africa in 2021 could rule him out until at least then, while Japan's Jamie Joseph has also been touted as a contender, after guiding the World Cup hosts to the quarter-finals.

Hansen won 86 percent of his matches in charge of New Zealand and was named World Coach of the Year four times.

"Steve's legacy is a very strong one," Barrett said. "His win percentage speaks for itself.

"I think the biggest thing with Steve is the way he makes his players feel. We know he 100 percent has our back.

"As a player, that's all you can really ask for. He's taught me a lot along the way and I'm very lucky for that."

Barrett said the All Blacks, who were beaten by England in the semi-final, were cheering for eventual champions South Africa in the final.

"It's nice to see a southern hemisphere team, and players that we are so familiar with and have friendships with lift the trophy," he added.

"If it couldn't be us, we were encouraging them to win."