Ulster 2016/2017

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Ulster 2016/2017

Post by SecretFly on Mon 12 Dec 2016, 9:40 pm

First topic message reminder :

Well the danger is always that life happens and he might refocus his entire life after two years in France.... were he to go.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by geoff999rugby on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:35 pm

So an 8 as I thought - that is where we would play Botha.

So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one.

Hopefully the coaching team will change.
As to SH I'd be fast tracking Stewart


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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:36 pm

LordDowlais wrote:So yet again, Cardiff Blues are signing a mediocre NWQ player ?

It seems so.....hold on there, are you calling big Nick medicore? Send him back then Smile

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:36 pm

Probably better than mediocre but just nothing special

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by carpet baboon on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:38 pm

What they said. Good player, good person,  does his job well not Stella but dependable and will give it everything.

On a side note I think it didn't help he was following on from Muller, who was an outstanding player and leader and coach by all accounts, who could drag the team up to his high standards, so he was always going to struggle a bit by comparison

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:40 pm

So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one
.

Actually I did see a bit of a rant about this on t'other forum and although not exactly eloquently put it makes so much sense.

"When I see the frustrated saying "Ulster are shyte" "Bryn's fu@cking useless" I am vexed because here's the craic, we can have 4 NIQs ...........maybe, if Mr Nuciwankstain is in bountiful mood, that apart we might attract the occasional second or third string from Connacht, but the key thing is, no Mexican or Turnip will saunter across the currently non existent , soon to be walled with watchtowers and machinegun placements, border to wear white. If any do, you can rest assured that it is because they can't get a contract anywhere else. I cite the case of nasty jackeen ballix BOD's cousin whose name I can;t remember but who was a worse 9 than Paul bloody Marshall.

So next time you feel like venting your spleen and having a dig at Bryn, remember that we try but we cannot get guys who are decent, but 7th or 8th in line at :mexican: to come here. Part of it may well be that we can't offer them a single Rex more than Mexico so why would they bother uprooting their life to come to this vile wee statelet?

It's Ulster's hidden and unspoken impediment
."

As I said, not eloquent but it rings true as to why we're ever further handicapped.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:44 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:
So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one.

I'd genuinely love to know what his sales pitch is to get players to come to Ulster, probably the same one he used on Marty Moore

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by BamBam on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 12:55 pm

LordDowlais wrote:So yet again, Cardiff Blues are signing a mediocre NWQ player ?

Are there any big name second row forwards who have agreed moves that you'd prefer?

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Kingshu on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 1:08 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:LD think it's pretty much a done deal

What are the thoughts from the Ulster side ? I think this could be quite an astute signing for Cardiff Blues, it's an area of weakness for them.

Cardiff Blues like the old NIQ Ulster players,
Maybe Pienaar isn't going to Montpellier after all. Shocked

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by geoff999rugby on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 1:18 pm

Would not get too excited about Botha - had more injuries than I've had hot dinners.

As to de Merwe - we not strong 4 to 8 but he would not make my first XV which would be
Henderson, AOC, Coetzee, Reidy, Henry

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 1:24 pm

I only just read about Botha and he's got glass body parts by all accounts. If all goes true to form he'll spend more time with G.G. than Sparky

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 2:19 pm

When you google Botha some of the first things you get are

Bulls' Botha suffers injury setback | Sport24
www.sport24.co.za/Rugby/CurrieCup/bulls-botha-suffers-injury-setback-20160905
5 Sep 2016

Super Rugby | Arno Botha has put nightmare injury run behind him ...
www.sarugbymag.co.za/blog/details/bothas-got-no-fear
5 Apr 2016

He ruptured the same knee twice, the second time in his first game back missing about 18 months. Hes torn a hamstring and pec coming back and then dislocated his shoulder last year

If hes recovered from the knee injury he could be a good signing if not we may need a few injury replacements to cover for him

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Munchkin on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 2:53 pm

So, it's Cooney. Not who I hoped for, and not a world beater, but can only be an improvement on Marshall.

Botha's probably going to spend more time in rehab than on the field.

Van der Merwe is better than mediocre. He's a very solid player, and a very good line-out operator. We don't need him though.

The best news is that Doak and Clarke may have been given the boot. Hopefully it's true, and hopefully we get some top quality replacements.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Redman on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 2:57 pm

You're right, Top 6 because Connacht and Blues aren't in play!!! Should have been able to do the maths.

Great news on Doak and Clarke. Really couldn't be happier about that.

Perplexed with Botha. If you're an English or French club that can hire in as many non-qualifieds as you like, sure. Why not take a bolter on a player who is borderline international quality and hope he stays fit. But for us, we need to make ever NIQ count. That means we need to be sure they'll made of granite. VDM for example, I agree he's 7/10 - competent at most things, master of none - but he was fit most weeks.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 3:42 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:LD think it's pretty much a done deal

What are the thoughts from the Ulster side ? I think this could be quite an astute signing for Cardiff Blues, it's an area of weakness for them.

I may be kicked and beaten for this but for me he's a solid lock and not much more. I always thought he was punching below his weight but hey, how dare I Wink
He's known to have leadership skills within the squad and is a cracking lineout operator. I'd say he'd be a good signing but don't expect too much......IMO

I think he's a bit more than that Pete. He consistently heads the lineout stats in the Pro12 and the scrum is noticeably under-powered if he is absent. He also puts in the work at rucks, leads the maul and tackles plenty. For me he's a bit quiet to be a leader and hasn't great hands for carrying or offloading - something Kiss wants in his locks. One of his best attributes is his fitness - he was hardly ever unavailable for Ulster.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by rodders on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 5:38 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:LD think it's pretty much a done deal

What are the thoughts from the Ulster side ?

I like him, really good line out operator and solid lock. I think he's a good signing. Sorry to see him go but with the NIQ spots being squeezed then it makes sense.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by toml on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 5:56 pm

Hopefully Ulster will be fairly decisive and cut Doak and Clarke loose completely. They have had plenty of chances and its seems to be difficult to say what they have added. Knowing UR though, they will probably just demote them somewhere and have them clog up the coaching posts, thus stopping any new talent.

Who would we bring in? I guess it would be from the Southern Hemisphere

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by geoff999rugby on Thu 12 Jan 2017, 8:33 pm

Standing out as a lock at Ulster is no big deal.
If deMerwe looks good to some people it is because the players to compare him against are so mediocre
Lets be honest other than Henderson no one else at the club is good enough to play in a championship winning side.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by clivemcl on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:29 am

With regards to the coaching replacements, am I not correct in saying the IRFU like to enforce their IQ agenda here as well as within squads. So since Kiss is foreign, the assistant coaches probably can't all be foreign too?

Let's not be too harsh on Botha until we see him. We do get carried away at times. We have an NIQ spare, and are limited to which positions we use. If he is at least as good as Reidy, that's a good thing. The thing that is killing us of late is the drop in quality when we are forced to pick 2nd choice. Not so much the lack of a single sensational stars.

I'd be happy with insistent performances and the priorities IMO for that is better squad depth and better coaching. Not so much another 'star'.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by profitius on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:57 am

clivemcl wrote:With regards to the coaching replacements, am I not correct in saying the IRFU like to enforce their IQ agenda here as well as within squads. So since Kiss is foreign, the assistant coaches probably can't all be foreign too?


No they don't mind foreign coaches. In fact they probably prefer quality coaches rather than inexperienced Irish coaches.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by profitius on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:30 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one.


Players don't exactly move freely between the 3 southern provinces either. The only top Irish player who moved between provinces that I can think of is Robbie Henshaw. Other than that the players who move are fringe players and they mostly arrive via another team. The best players in every province usually wants to stay in their home province.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by clivemcl on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 8:33 am

Do you reckon the new coaching team was being targeted as early as Barakat leaving? Perhaps know he had no job here next season, he was allowed to leave to be with Western Force for pre-season?

Then again, maybe he just didn't like working with Doak and Clarke!

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 9:34 am

profitius wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one.


Players don't exactly move freely between the 3 southern provinces either. The only top Irish player who moved between provinces that I can think of is Robbie Henshaw. Other than that the players who move are fringe players and they mostly arrive via another team. The best players in every province usually wants to stay in their home province.

The problem is, Ulster cant even get fringe players to move north never mind top players as Ah You was the first in a long time that didn't come from Ulster

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by rodders on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 9:53 am

geoff999rugby wrote:Standing out as a lock at Ulster is no big deal.
If deMerwe looks good to some people it is because the players to compare him against are so mediocre
Lets be honest other than Henderson no one else at the club is good enough to play in a championship winning side.

Well I'm comparing him to Muller and I think he's done a good job of replacing the great man.

I'm impressed with what I see from Treadwell as well, if he can stay fit he looks potentially international quality and could prove a great find.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Don Alfonso on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 10:39 am

profitius wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
So no southerner will come north what a surprise.
When will Nucifora realise he is flogging a dead horse on this one.


Players don't exactly move freely between the 3 southern provinces either. The only top Irish player who moved between provinces that I can think of is Robbie Henshaw. Other than that the players who move are fringe players and they mostly arrive via another team. The best players in every province usually wants to stay in their home province.

Touch of a straw man argument there. No need for "top players" - just decent players. Cronin, Keatley, Conway, Felix Jones are all decent players who have moved directly between provinces, all off the top of my head.

Leinster have Ruddock, O'Brien, Heaslip, VdF, Leavy, Conan, Murphy. If any one of them came to Ulster I'd say we'd rearrange the back-row so they'd be a starter. I haven't included Ryan in that list, but he'd be second choice at least. He was moaning in the press in March (?) last year about being so far down the pecking order and saying he'd be open to moving, including to another province. But he won't come to Ulster apparently.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 10:50 am

We don't need top players, we need a huge injection of team ethics. At the moment we have 15 players taking to the field who are just that, 15 players. We need a solid team turning out for games much like Glasgow had when there wasn't exactly a plethora of marquee names on the team sheet.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Don Alfonso on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 11:14 am

Indeed.

I am genuinely hopeful new coaches will do the job. The coaching set-up is stale and, in Clarke, simply poor. A whole load of fresh ideas should hopefully work wonders. Look at the difference in Leinster with the addition of Lancaster.

I won't have a fit if I've never heard of the new guys coming in. I don't expect Graham Henry has just been biding his time. The fact is we've seriously been under-performing, and you're right, Pete - playing at times like fifteen guys who met while shopping at Forestside. A number of our players seem to be stalling or have gone backwards in their development. I think we need a Cheika equivalent. Or at least just a coaching set-up that can do justice to the talent we have.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 11:20 am

Don Alfonso wrote:Indeed.

I am genuinely hopeful new coaches will do the job. The coaching set-up is stale and, in Clarke, simply poor. A whole load of fresh ideas should hopefully work wonders. Look at the difference in Leinster with the addition of Lancaster.

I won't have a fit if I've never heard of the new guys coming in. I don't expect Graham Henry has just been biding his time. The fact is we've seriously been under-performing, and you're right, Pete - playing at times like fifteen guys who met while shopping at Forestside. A number of our players seem to be stalling or have gone backwards in their development. I think we need a Cheika equivalent. Or at least just a coaching set-up that can do justice to the talent we have.

Big old +1 to that Don. It wouldn't take much to galvanise the current squad. A couple of decent coaches under Kiss that are actually on speaking terms would be a great start.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 11:42 am

Reading the DementedMole article Golden posted on the Ireland thread it had a nice mention for Ulster and the deployment of Henderson in the back row

While Ulster fans will point to the injuries suffered by high-profile Springbok signing Marcel Coetzee and veteran open side Chris Henry as reason for Henderson’s deputisation to the flank, Ulster have a number of quality young back rows who must be desperate for game time – senior squad members Lorcan Dow and Conor Joyce have the pedigree of starting 9 of 10 games for their respective Irish U20 teams in 2015 and 2013, whilst academy member and Leinster transplant Nick Timoney [himself a highly decorated schoolboy player in his Blackrock College days] managed to pick up 8 caps alongside Dow in 2015. That Ulster’s recent inability to produce quality backrow forwards in the same numbers as Leinster or Munster may have something to do with the reluctance to actually select them – Chris Henry only played in his first game for his province as a 24 year old – is probably worth another day’s exploration in its own right.

I actually hope they do that article but improvements in Ulster I think will come from competition and hunger and a positive environment and culture that seems to be lacking.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:03 pm

Team to play Exeter

(15-9): L Ludik, C Piutau, L Marshall, S McCloskey, A Trimble (captain), P Jackson, D Shanahan;
(1-8): C Black, R Best, R Kane, K Treadwell, P Browne, I Henderson, C Henry, S Reidy;
Replacements (16-23): J Andrew, A Warwick, J Simpson, F van der Merwe, C Ross, P Marshall, B Herron, J Stockdale.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:05 pm

Shanahan starts ahead of Marshall, no Bowe, Charlie on the wing, vDM on the bench

Seems the changes are coming already

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:09 pm

At Last, Charlie back on the wing and Louis at FB.
Wee P back to being the impact sub then behind Shanahan. Perhaps it was him blocking up and coming players all this time Wink

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Pete330v2 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:17 pm

Chiefs team:CHIEFS SIDE TO FACE ULSTER RUGBY
15 Phil Dollman
14 Jack Nowell
13 Michele Campagnaro
12 Ian Whitten
11 Olly Woodburn
10 Gareth Steenson (capt)
9 Dave Lewis
1 Ben Moon
2 Luke Cowan-Dickie
3 Greg Holmes
4 Mitch Lees
5 Jonny Hill
6 Tom Johnson
7 Don Armand
8 Thomas Waldrom
16 Jack Yeandle
17 Moray Low
18 Harry Williams
19 Dave Dennis
20 Kai Horstmann
21 Stuart Townsend
22 Joe Simmonds
23 Ollie Devoto

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:18 pm

So Chiefs are really going for it then Shocked

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Don Alfonso on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 12:45 pm

Won't get the win, I don't think - too many injuries. Form generally too poor.

So glad to see Kane, Simpson, Andrew, Shanahan and Herron on the team. It'll be a bit of experience, a bit of playing alongside some of the big names. Good to see Kane, Shanahan and potentially Herron get some experience partnering first-teamers in various units.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Redman on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:13 pm

Big vote of confidence in Treadwell. Haven't heard anything to suggest VDM is carrying a knock.

No Herring. Presuming he's injured

Strange with Warrick vs Black. Right call in my opinion but seems like they view Warrick as an impact player rather than a starter. McCall looks like our No.1 No.1 but Black deputizing. Warrick on the bench both times. Unless Black has been injured and being nursed back via Ravens.

Piutau on the wing and Ludik at FB is the right call, but I worry how they've come to that conclusion. Given how amateur our coaches are, were they just reading internet forums looking for ideas?

Damning indictment of our player development that this is Shanahan's 1st start, in a must win away game in Europe. Wish the lad all the best, but he's been with us for 2.5 years and we couldn't have found him a start against Zebre or Treviso at home? Nothing other than lack of foresight from management.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by rodders on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:21 pm

Anyone else think they have made a mistake with the captaincy?

I think it should have been Henry, Trimble doesn't look comfortable at all, in fact Best seemed to be the one communicating with the Referee in recent games even when Trimbs was on the field.

Shananan at 9 is a weak link, but I think we can get the win.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:39 pm

Agree rodders, Henry though started the season out injured so probably left him to focus on returning to form

Trimble is too timid in his communication like Rory used to be but hes learned to be a bit more forceful with it while still coming across as the polite country boy

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Kingshu on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:41 pm

Thin letting Kiss picking his own coaching team will have a positive impact.

Munsters squad hasn't changed much from last year but they look like a completely different team from the one that struggled to qualify for Europe last season.
Down to Erasmus and bringing in Nienaber, and galvanised by the unfortunate passing of Axel.

Leinster are looking a much better team this season, how much is down to having Lancaster and Graham Henry as an advisor for a while is difficult to say.

Would like Paul Treu the stormers defense coach, De Bruin Lions attack coach

I think a shake up in coaching will hopefully see us transform ala Munster.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by rodders on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 1:48 pm

Kingshu wrote:Thin letting Kiss picking his own coaching team will have a positive impact.

Munsters squad hasn't changed much from last year but they look like a completely different team from the one that struggled to qualify for Europe last season.
Down to Erasmus and bringing in Nienaber, and galvanised by the unfortunate passing of Axel.

Leinster are looking a much better team this season, how much is down to having Lancaster and Graham Henry as an advisor for a while is difficult to say.

Would like Paul Treu the stormers defense coach, De Bruin Lions attack coach

I think a shake up in coaching will hopefully see us transform ala Munster.

I think you see the importance of experience in a coach when a team is not going well.

Leinster and Munster have really turned things around spectacularly and I thing it isn't a coincidence that they brought some experience in to their coaching teams this year.

Connacht have been weakened by departures and injury this year but Lamb has done an amazing job.

BY contrast Kiss is an experienced no2 but not a head coach and the rest of the team have no experience outside Ulster and I think that is showing. Things aren't going to plan and no one seems to be able to work out what is wrong.
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Munchkin on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:13 pm

Good to see Ludik picked at 15, with Piutau at 14. Gives us more of a chance.

Only outstanding weakness in the starting XV is Shanahan, but then they need to play with confidence and as a team. One can only hope.

I think what's wrong with Ulster is internal politics. Coaches putting their own ambitions before the team.


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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Kingshu on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:23 pm

profitius did say that Munster are letting Copleand go at the end of this season.

Surely we can convince an out of contact Player to move North.
I think he would be a good addition, not the starting quality we need but certainly add better depth.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:23 pm

Munchkin wrote:

I think what's wrong with Ulster is internal politics. Coaches putting their own ambitions before the team.


You think some may be scuppering Les?

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Munchkin on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:36 pm

marty2086 wrote:
Munchkin wrote:

I think what's wrong with Ulster is internal politics. Coaches putting their own ambitions before the team.


You think some may be scuppering Les?

Not intentionally, but as a consequence of Doak being promoted to Head Coach over Clarke. I don't really know, but all the sounds indicate that Doak and Clarke behave like two immature brats, and this is adversely impacting the team.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:41 pm

Munchkin wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
Munchkin wrote:

I think what's wrong with Ulster is internal politics. Coaches putting their own ambitions before the team.


You think some may be scuppering Les?

Not intentionally, but as a consequence of Doak being promoted to Head Coach over Clarke. I don't really know, but all the sounds indicate that Doak and Clarke behave like two immature brats, and this is adversely impacting the team.

Cant make Kiss' job easy when he has to referee and babysit his two top coaches

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Munchkin on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:46 pm

marty2086 wrote:
Munchkin wrote:
marty2086 wrote:
Munchkin wrote:

I think what's wrong with Ulster is internal politics. Coaches putting their own ambitions before the team.


You think some may be scuppering Les?

Not intentionally, but as a consequence of Doak being promoted to Head Coach over Clarke. I don't really know, but all the sounds indicate that Doak and Clarke behave like two immature brats, and this is adversely impacting the team.

Cant make Kiss' job easy when he has to referee and babysit his two top coaches

It can't be, and his own reputation takes a hit because of it. I'm certain he wants nothing more than to get rid of both, and bring in his own staff. I will be very disappointed if Clarke and Doak are with us next season.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 2:51 pm

I take it the review is taking place either because Kiss has said they need to go and Ulster/IRFU are wanting to make sure they do or its been decided and they are sounding out replacements but need to get that in place first before giving them the boot

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by Munchkin on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 3:02 pm

marty2086 wrote:I take it the review is taking place either because Kiss has said they need to go and Ulster/IRFU are wanting to make sure they do or its been decided and they are sounding out replacements but need to get that in place first before giving them the boot

I only hope the reports are true. If they are, then we have to hope that there are better, available, alternatives to Doak and Clarke. It would probably be the best thing for both of them, if they can get similar positions elsewhere. They have been too long in the same set-up, and with little to show for it. Moving to a new side might inspire them to better things.

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 3:09 pm

It spoke volumes that Humph went to Gloucester and only took Bell with him and left them

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by rodders on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 3:21 pm

In fairness Gloucester haven't done particularly well under either....
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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

Post by marty2086 on Fri 13 Jan 2017, 3:31 pm

rodders he was given a blank cheque and free reign to bring in who he wanted and wanted neither of them but Gloucester are an improving team with Paddy McAllister looking good anytime Ive seen him, well except one time

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Re: Ulster 2016/2017

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