How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

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How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by DaveM on Sun 12 Mar 2017, 12:04 pm

First topic message reminder :

England next play NZ in the autumn of 2018. We can be confident that they will be ranked 2 and 1 in the world, but England will have home advantage. I expect this will be one of the most hyped games in the history of rugby. But how will England change between now and then? Obviously there will be injuries, loss of form, players coming from nowhere, etc, but here are some things I expect:

- England will get a lot better. We are still a young and inexperienced side, and I would have thought we would naturally get about 20% better over this timescale.
- Elliot Daly will be fullback. Mike Brown has been a great servant but is in decline, and Daly is a wonderful footballer. I think this might be Daly's long-term position for England.
- Jamie George will be hooker, Luke Cowan-Dickie will be the 'finisher' on the bench, and Itoje will be Captain. Hartley has been lucky in terms of not missing internationals, when he eventually does I think the case for change will be clear.
- Underhill will be in the matchday squad, and will quite possibly be the starting 7. England have some fantastic backrows at age-group level, but Underhill will come into contention before them and he may be able to push past Haskell. I think Robshaw will still be the starting 6 at this point.

What does everyone else think?

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 3:06 pm

George came on and promptly lost an attacking lineout didn't he. To use your own argument against you its.ok doing it when the pressure is off but come the tough game for gs away to ireland. ...I jest of course but I'm sure you will now change yur tune slightly. Is there no kids you blood? Who pays at full back. Whom at wing?

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 3:12 pm

beshocked wrote:You ask for changes when we lose whilst I look for changes before we lose. Important difference.

Geordiefalcon perhaps you felt elated when we lost to Ireland, I felt disappointed. An opportunity to break records gone. I didn't feel England got over the line. A GS is what was needed.

England got over the line vs Wales but the toughest game was always going to be the last one.

So no 7 & 1/2 George was still superior to Hartley throughout the 6 nations. Not given a start though.

Depends who is performing best - still think Brown should be replaced.

Definitely a politician..... picard

Why would I be elated losing to Ireland...?

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Gooseberry on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 3:26 pm

beshocked wrote:You ask for changes when we lose whilst I look for changes before we lose. Important difference.

Well yeah England might never have been in a position to blow the grandslam if theyd followed your advice.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by beshocked on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 3:31 pm

Geordiefalcon you don't seem to be bothered we lost to Ireland, perhaps elation is an exaggeration but nonplussed because the title was in the bag.

Gooseberry indeed, replacing a poorly performing player is a bad thing to do.

no 7 & 1/2 indeed, his only lineout of the competition he lost. Not great. Pressure was on in Wales.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 3:59 pm

Well the fact the England team seemed non plussed...then yes I guess I am a little.

The England team, showed little passion or aggression or will to win. It was like they had already won the 6n and were away on their holidays.

In fact the whole game was odd to me. That's why im not buying into this idea that the Irish are amongst the favorites for the WC...they could only beat a lethargic side by 4 points in Ireland!

On the other hand...I think you are reading WAY TOO MUCH in to the loss.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by beshocked on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:08 pm

Well I think that's frustating personally.

Yes I do focus perhaps too much on defeats but I think you have to if you wish to improve.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by LondonTiger on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:10 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
That's why im not buying into this idea that the Irish are amongst the favorites for the WC

Hey, this season they have beaten two teams on long winning streaks, the two top ranked teams in the world. Surely they should be favoured to do well should they get to a crunch match like the final.

Mind you, with defeats to Wales and Scotland, it can be argued that the problem for Ireland woudl not be failing in teh final, but failing to get that far.

Run

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:14 pm

beshocked wrote:Well I think that's frustating personally.

Yes I do focus perhaps too much on defeats but I think you have to if you wish to improve.

It was the most frustrating part of the afternoon for me and all my mates watching the game. Why did the England team not come out pulling up trees. There was nothing like the intensity of previous matches, like the Australia games etc.

That's probably the biggest concern from the 6n. Injured players can recover and get match fit. New players can come in, but why not get pumped up for a game like that.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:15 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
That's why im not buying into this idea that the Irish are amongst the favorites for the WC

Hey, this season they have beaten two teams on long winning streaks, the two top ranked teams in the world. Surely they should be favoured to do well should they get to a crunch match like the final.

Mind you, with defeats to Wales and Scotland, it can be argued that the problem for Ireland woudl not be failing in teh final, but failing to get that far.

Run

Its that inconsistency that is the issue. On top form they are VERY good...but they have a habit of not matching that game on game. Sort that out then yes ill change my opinion that they can challenge for the whole thing.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:20 pm

Pressure was on and he failed beshocked. Like you said that ratified pressure of a gs. Maybe we should just look to Taylor and LCD?

What about the kids etc?

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 4:28 pm

Biggest thing for me is making sure everyone in the squad that tours to Argentina is uninjured and as fit as can be with out playing matches.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Poorfour on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 7:10 pm

Dublin is a difficult away venue to go to - statistically I think it's been England's toughest away trip of recent years.

Compared to performances like 2011 and 2015, England did much better - they didn't look overawed and I think the level of effort was there. But they didn't control the breakdown, and the Irish defence remained organised throughout the game (unlike, say, France).

As a result, England weren't getting over the gain line and the pattern of play became very predictable - go through a few phases, going nowhere, kick it away.

It didn't look to me like they were mentally on holiday, but they did run out of ideas. Billy was in as primary carrier but looked a little bit below his best and that was enough for the Irish double tackle to snuff out the threat he posed. I was a bit surprised and disappointed that Eddie didn't mix it up a bit earlier - I thought Sinckler made a couple of good carries in his 2 minutes and England could have used that earlier.

Even so, the game was still winnable right up until that lost lineout near the end of the game.

Am I bothered? Does my face look bothered? Yes, I'm frustrated. But we need a bit of perspective. England were still missing two players who I think would have made a material difference, and had two more below par when they needed to be at the top of their game. They are also still only a year in to Eddie's project and have a 95% win rate in this RWC cycle.

Next question is: are there any players who could have been on the pitch who might have made a difference? I am not sure. A grand slam decider isn't the place to be trying something new. The players I might have wanted to see weren't available anyway.

The loss is frustrating, but I don't see it as a reason to make changes over and above what Eddie already has planned. He will undoubtedly try a few new players or new positions on the Argentina tour - not least because a fair few of his starters will be in NZ. As we've seen with previous tours, it will be a launchpad for some players, and a graveyard for others - and not always the ones the pundits expect.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Cyril on Tue 11 Apr 2017, 7:24 pm

Great post, poorfour. Agree completely Smile

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 9:30 am

Well we'll have more idea around the 19th (give or take a few days) when Gatland names his squad...

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by robbo277 on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 12:48 pm

beshocked wrote:You ask for changes when we lose whilst I look for changes before we lose. Important difference.

beshocked wrote:Yes I do focus perhaps too much on defeats but I think you have to if you wish to improve.

These two quotes seem to be at odds with each other. Unless you are just overly negative, and only focus on what went wrong.

We don't have a counter-factual, had the changes you suggested been made when you would have made them, England might have won the Grand Slam; the Championship without a Slam or neither.

Hartley probably does need to make way for George, and Brown probably does need to make way for Daly, with Nowell and Watson starting. But not just because we lost to Ireland.

We shouldn't do away with the back row just because we don't think it fits a pre-determined template of how we think a back row should function. Trial some guys in Argentina, but the first choice back row are 7 from 7 under Jones, and Robshaw and Vunipola at 6 and 8 with a physical-ish presence at 7 worked well for us in the third Aus test and the Autumn games.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by robbo277 on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 12:50 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
That's why im not buying into this idea that the Irish are amongst the favorites for the WC

Hey, this season they have beaten two teams on long winning streaks, the two top ranked teams in the world. Surely they should be favoured to do well should they get to a crunch match like the final.

Mind you, with defeats to Wales and Scotland, it can be argued that the problem for Ireland woudl not be failing in teh final, but failing to get that far.

Run

A World Cup final will be a crunch match for both teams. A World Record attempt is only a crunch match for one team. We don't know how Ireland would do under the duress of a crunch match like a World Cup semi-final or final.

You'd think with their European pedigree they might be alright, but that doesn't always translate as it should.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 1:13 pm

Is Sam Jones back playing or is he still injured.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by LondonTiger on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 2:23 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Is Sam Jones back playing or is he still injured.

From Wasps team announcement before Saints game:

Sam Jones (ankle/ leg) – hoping to be back in training towards end of April

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 2:42 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Is Sam Jones back playing or is he still injured.

From Wasps team announcement before Saints game:

Sam Jones (ankle/ leg) – hoping to be back in training towards end of April

Probably too late for Argentina then, which is a shame. He's unlikely to be fit enough for more than a cameo in the playoffs. Would have been good to see him get a try out.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 3:34 pm

And Clifford is out of the tour - having another op on his shoulder out for 12 weeks.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by king_carlos on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 3:53 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:And Clifford is out of the tour - having another op on his shoulder out for 12 weeks.
That will probably throw Harrison a life line.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 3:56 pm

6 Robshaw
7 Harrison
8 Hughes

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 3:58 pm

Harrison has looked bang average, not sure hes even a Saints starter is he? Hes been a sub when Ive seen him.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Scottrf on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 3:58 pm

Just looking forward to seeing Solomona. A special talent.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Gwlad on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:00 pm

I think Solomona might go Lions

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:04 pm

furious steam steam steam

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Scottrf on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:04 pm

Gwlad wrote:I think Solomona might go Lions

He's good enough. A true match winner.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:07 pm

Gwlad wrote:I think Solomona might go Lions

I'd be very surprised with this. He's looking good in the AP but hasn't been tested at a high level, especially in defence. It would be a big risk if he was needed to start.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by LondonTiger on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:09 pm

Solomona looked like a defensive liability against Wuss last week. Overall it was probably his weakest performance for Sale to date.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:10 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Harrison has looked bang average, not sure hes even a Saints starter is he? Hes been a sub when Ive seen him.

I agree but who else is there...

Williams - Bench for Tigers
Harrison - Bench for Saints
Chisholm - is he playing for Quins
Jones - Injured
Haskell - I guess he probably wont be a lion so it'll be him.
Conlon - Needs to be a starter for Sarries
Wray - Very unfashionable...but effective
Mark Wilson - Completely unrated
Kvesic - Unrated
Wallace - Unrated
Wood - Meh

The kids - Going to the JWC

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Gwlad on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:10 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
Gwlad wrote:I think Solomona might go Lions

I'd be very surprised with this. He's looking good in the AP but hasn't been tested at a high level, especially in defence. It would be a big risk if he was needed to start.

Big risk very true but he can be tested out fully in the club games and if he is poor then no harm done, we have sufficient back 3 cover going in the form of Williams, Hogg, Watson, Daly, possibly Half and Seymour that I can't see it as being an issue. He's a game changer right.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:17 pm

Possibly, he's looked good in the AP but so does Wade.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:18 pm

Likely flanks for me GF will be:

Haskell, Robshaw, Williams, Wood, Underhill.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:24 pm

Ah yes...Underhill. The saviour of English back rows.

Haskell - Hope his ongoing injury problem allows him to be as physical as Jones wants him to be.
Robshaw - Top player
Williams - Bench for Tigers? No difference to Harrison
Wood - Needs to be flung out...

That's not a hugely optimistic flank collection.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:31 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:Harrison has looked bang average, not sure hes even a Saints starter is he? Hes been a sub when Ive seen him.

I agree but who else is there...

Williams - Bench for Tigers
Harrison - Bench for Saints
Chisholm - is he playing for Quins
Jones - Injured
Haskell - I guess he probably wont be a lion so it'll be him.
Conlon - Needs to be a starter for Sarries
Wray - Very unfashionable...but effective
Mark Wilson - Completely unrated
Kvesic - Unrated
Wallace - Unrated
Wood - Meh

The kids - Going to the JWC

Chisholm has been starting for Quins in preference to Clifford but is still coming back from what was supposed to be a slight concussion. There's always Dave Ward [ducks for cover]...

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Gwlad on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:31 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Possibly, he's looked good in the AP but so does Wade.

True and w know Gats likes Wade

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Scottrf on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 4:34 pm

Gwlad wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:Possibly, he's looked good in the AP but so does Wade.

True and w know Gats likes Wade

Why wouldn't he? Tries are nice.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 5:30 pm

Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:Possibly, he's looked good in the AP but so does Wade.

True and w know Gats likes Wade

Why wouldn't he? Tries are nice.

Not if someone's scoring them against you because of feeble defence. Wade can get away with that in the AP but won't in NZ.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Gwlad on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 5:34 pm

Poorfour wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:Possibly, he's looked good in the AP but so does Wade.

True and w know Gats likes Wade

Why wouldn't he? Tries are nice.

Not if someone's scoring them against you because of feeble defence. Wade can get away with that in the AP but won't in NZ.

Which is why England have ignored him?

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by LondonTiger on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 5:38 pm

I love watching Wade play, and do wonder whether being whipped off the last Argentina team harmed his England prospects.

Thing is though that at the weekend while he looked great going forward, allying his size to his defensive positioning, he was causing major defensive issues for Wasps. Sometimes you do have to choose the better attacker and accept certain defensive issues, but with teh way EJ looks to play I struggle to see Wade ever fitting in.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 5:56 pm

LondonTiger wrote:I love watching Wade play, and do wonder whether being whipped off the last Argentina team harmed his England prospects.

Thing is though that at the weekend while he looked great going forward, allying his size to his defensive positioning, he was causing major defensive issues for Wasps. Sometimes you do have to choose the better attacker and accept certain defensive issues, but with teh way EJ looks to play I struggle to see Wade ever fitting in.

As I've said before, Eddie's primary creative axis is Ford-Farrell-Joseph - the job of the wings and fullback is firstly to get go forward and recycle the ball so that trio can exploit the space, secondly to finish and thirdly to be solid in defence. That's why we see a back three of Brown, Nowell and Daly rather than, say Watson, Wade and May. Different jobs, different staff.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 12 Apr 2017, 6:15 pm

Wade is a mile off defensively, hence his constant exclusion from England squads under different coaches. I do like the guy but just can't see him ever making the step up.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by beshocked on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 8:57 am

Rise of Daly has been pretty impressive actually. From being on the fringes of England to being a potential Lions tourist.

Poorfour that's true. Though I am a bit worried by the lack of ball sometimes the wingers get/don't get.

Similar problem under Lancaster. Wingers weren't always encouraged to come off their wing.

Obviously I think Brown not passing the ball enough is part of the problem plus wingers need to be prepared to go looking for the ball and running support lines.

Equally if you can shut down an opposition's back three you can keep them from having any impact.

Wade would be wasted for England if he was starved of the ball, Wasps try to get him involved more because of his ability to create something out of nothing.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 8:59 am

Cant see Browns passing being a problem for much longer...when Daly takes over.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by beshocked on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 9:18 am

Daly can't play at outside centre, wing and full back all at the same time. He's proven himself to be good but not that good.

What position does Eddie Jones want Daly to play as?

Do you think the long term back three will be Nowell,Daly,Watson? If so it has potential if they can build up some synergy.

Also with Daly and Watson likely to tour we won't be able to see that back three.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 9:31 am

Ive said before...I think Jones is just gearing Daly up for FB.

He's giving him time to get his international feet on the wing (not quite a critical position as FB), whilst he still has the last few games from Brown.

Once Daly goes to NZ and comes back I think he'll move to FB.

He has pace, he has creativity, handling and a monster boot. Perfect strike runner.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Scottrf on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 9:34 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:Ive said before...I think Jones is just gearing Daly up for FB.

He's said that.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Cyril on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 9:35 am

Yeah, I definitely see Daly as a full back. He's got all the attributes.

Plus we've got plenty of wingers and the full-back position is very much up for grabs.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by beshocked on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 9:55 am

Cyril wrote:Yeah, I definitely see Daly as a full back. He's got all the attributes.

Plus we've got plenty of wingers and the full-back position is very much up for grabs.

Have plenty of wingers but I'd say only 3 are good enough currently - Nowell,Daly and Watson.

If Daly is moved to FB that leaves England light on good wing cover.

I know May has a significant fan club but he's been dropped numerous times because he's not consistent enough.

Players are allowed a bad game or two but not having more indifferent/poor games than good.

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 13 Apr 2017, 10:16 am

I know Daly has done a good job but I don't really see him as a winger, he just lacks something, perhaps a bit of finishing quality(despite a good try against Wales).

Nowell, Watson, May, Yarde and Roko are very good options, most teams in the NH would kill to have this depth. Poor Wales have to play Cuthbert ffs!

Sgt_Pooly

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Re: How will England evolve before they next play New Zealand?

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