England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

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England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 19 Jun 2017, 11:49 am

First topic message reminder :

At some point in the summer, Eddie Jones will announce his initial EPS. He has been talking about the difficulty he faces trying to whittle it down to that number and it will be interesting to see what he comes up with. Who would be in your EPS?

As a reminder:

The deal with PRL allows Eddie Jones to name a 45 man squad. the clubs get money for players contributed, Jones can call on them for an agreed amount of training camps and England can (to a degree) manage their workload. Jones is allowed to make a number of changes to this half way through the season. Separate 33 man training squads are announced prior to the AIs and the 6Ns - these squads are NOT restricted to players in the EPS.

Last Seasons EPS members (Bold in Both, Italics added on 31st December, normal font dropped from squad):

Forwards

Josh Beaumont (Sale Sharks)
Nathan Catt (Bath Rugby)
Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)
Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs)
Jack Clifford (Harlequins)

Will Evans (Leicester Tigers)
Charlie Ewels (Bath Rugby)
Jamie George (Saracens)

Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers)
Teimana Harrison (Northampton Saints)
Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints)
James Haskell (Wasps)
Paul Hill (Northampton Saints)  
Nathan Hughes (Wasps)
Maro Itoje (Saracens)

Sam Jones (Wasps)
George Kruis (Saracens)
Joe Launchbury (Wasps)
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Joe Marler (Harlequins)
Matt Mullan (Wasps)
Chris Robshaw (Harlequins)
Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins)

Tommy Taylor
Billy Vunipola (Saracens)
Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
Mike Williams (Leicester Tigers)

Tom Youngs (Leicester Tigers)
Tom Wood (Northampton Saints)

Backs

Mike Brown (Harlequins)
Danny Care (Harlequins)
Elliot Daly (Wasps)
Owen Farrell (Saracens)
George Ford (Bath Rugby)

Alex Goode (Saracens)
Mike Haley (Sale Sharks)
Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby)

Alex Lozowski (Saracens)
Joe Marchant (Harlequins)
Jonny May (Gloucester Rugby)
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs)
Dan Robson (Wasps)
Semesa Rokoduguni (Bath Rugby)

Joe Simpson (Wasps)
Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
Ben Spencer (Saracens)
Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors)
Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)
Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby)
Marland Yarde (Harlequins)
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:18 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I'm with the "don't rate Robshaw too highly" camp. This 95% theory is interesting. He tends to plod through games doing nothing particularly great and nothing particularly bad.
Whenever a ball starts bouncing around loose, because it has been tapped down badly from a lineout, popped out from a ruck, or passed blindly in open play, Robshaw is often the guy who makes the ball safe. That skill could be even more important under the new laws, where defences are just panning out, and the ball isn't being turned over at the breakdown.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Gwlad on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 3:03 am

FFS we still trying to find random things Chris robshaw is good at. How about being anonymous.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Cumbrian on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 7:17 am

Writing messages about England at 3:03am Gwlad? Must be keeping you up! That sounds like obsession, get help!
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 10:20 am

I must admit I rate Robshaw highly. Always have, he's a brick and mortar style of player, which is essential these days. He's like our mark Wilson.

And the proof of his ability is surely Eddie Jones complete turnabout over him. Slating him through the world cup to pretty saying he's one of the first names on the teamsheet is a pretty strong statement.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by yappysnap on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 11:50 am

It's a bit of a corny phrase, but Robshaw is one of those players you might not notice too much when he plays, but you'll definitely notice when he doesn't.

He has to have the right partners in the backrow to balance out his lack of x factor, but he has no weaknesses really.


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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 11:55 am

I think you hit the nail there Yappy, you need balance with him in there. Ie players who can do the big carrying etc...but that's fine...we have Billy, Hughes etc.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Poorfour on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 12:03 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:I think you hit the nail there Yappy, you need balance with him in there. Ie players who can do the big carrying etc...but that's fine...we have Billy, Hughes etc.

I always enjoy the look of surprise on Robshaw's face when he makes a break... he knows his job is "take slow ball into traffic, make half a yard and get it back quickly so that the team gets on the front foot", so I think he always expects to be gang tackled by a bunch of big opponents.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 12:24 pm

yappysnap wrote:It's a bit of a corny phrase, but Robshaw is one of those players you might not notice too much when he plays, but you'll definitely notice when he doesn't.

He has to have the right partners in the backrow to balance out his lack of x factor, but he has no weaknesses really.


He has no major weakness, but he has no major strength for me. I like the guy, he's an honest hard working pro who gives his all, but...he's nothing past average imo.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:23 pm

Poorfour wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:I think you hit the nail there Yappy, you need balance with him in there. Ie players who can do the big carrying etc...but that's fine...we have Billy, Hughes etc.

I always enjoy the look of surprise on Robshaw's face when he makes a break... he knows his job is "take slow ball into traffic, make half a yard and get it back quickly so that the team gets on the front foot", so I think he always expects to be gang tackled by a bunch of big opponents.
Best break he made was in the opening moments of the first test on the 2014 New Zealand Tour. Ma'a Nonu should have seen a yellow for pulling back Haskell.


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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Gwlad on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:32 pm

Cumbrian wrote:Writing messages about England at 3:03am Gwlad? Must be keeping you up! That sounds like obsession, get help!
oh dear....maybe I live in a different time zone to you Rolling Eyes

Its the person who notes the time a message was posted needs help

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Scottrf on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:41 pm

Gwlad wrote:FFS we still trying to find random things Chris robshaw is good at. How about being anonymous.
I always think rating of Robshaw is proportional to rugby knowledge. This definitely backs it up.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Barney McGrew did it on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:46 pm

England always miss him when he's not on the pitch - says it all for me. Last 2 coaches agree, only potato-head didn't (and that speaks volumes).
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Cumbrian on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:58 pm

Gwlad wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:Writing messages about England at 3:03am Gwlad? Must be keeping you up! That sounds like obsession, get help!
oh dear....maybe I live in a different time zone to you Rolling Eyes

Its the person who notes the time a message was posted needs help

Sure you do champ, sure you do.
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 1:58 pm

Barney McGrew did it wrote:England always miss him when he's not on the pitch

Do we? We've just picked up the 6N without Robshaw playing a game.

Nobody is that convincing when suggesting what Robshaw actually brings to the Int set-up. I just keep hearing he does the unseen work, nothing flashy etc etc. For me he's a player that we need to improve on going forward, whether that be one of the Curry's or Underhill.

Would Robshaw get in any other home nations side....probably not.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Cumbrian on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:03 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
Poorfour wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:I think you hit the nail there Yappy, you need balance with him in there. Ie players who can do the big carrying etc...but that's fine...we have Billy, Hughes etc.

I always enjoy the look of surprise on Robshaw's face when he makes a break... he knows his job is "take slow ball into traffic, make half a yard and get it back quickly so that the team gets on the front foot", so I think he always expects to be gang tackled by a bunch of big opponents.
Best break he made was in the opening moments of the first test on the 2014 New Zealand Tour. Ma'a Nonu should have seen a yellow for pulling back Haskell.


That was the match where Nigel Owens bottled two obvious cards for the All Blacks but couldn't get his hand in his pocket quick enough to dismiss Yarde? I'm normally a fan of Owens, but he didn't have his best match that day.
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Gwlad on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:08 pm

Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:FFS we still trying to find random things Chris robshaw is good at. How about being anonymous.
I always think rating of Robshaw is proportional to rugby knowledge. This definitely backs it up.

Quite. i.e. if you know anything about rugby then you know he is pretty rubbish.

Stop trying to be clever doesn't suit you

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Barney McGrew did it on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:11 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
Barney McGrew did it wrote:England always miss him when he's not on the pitch

Do we? We've just picked up the 6N without Robshaw playing a game.

Nobody is that convincing when suggesting what Robshaw actually brings to the Int set-up. I just keep hearing he does the unseen work, nothing flashy etc etc. For me he's a player that we need to improve on going forward, whether that be one of the Curry's or Underhill.

Would Robshaw get in any other home nations side....probably not.

Or maybe that proves my point - would've been a GS Very Happy
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Scottrf on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:14 pm

Gwlad wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:FFS we still trying to find random things Chris robshaw is good at. How about being anonymous.
I always think rating of Robshaw is proportional to rugby knowledge. This definitely backs it up.

Quite. i.e. if you know anything about rugby then you know he is pretty rubbish.

Stop trying to be clever doesn't suit you

None of your posts are anything but an England inferiority complex. Not sure that counts as knowledge.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Gwlad on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:19 pm

Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
Gwlad wrote:FFS we still trying to find random things Chris robshaw is good at. How about being anonymous.
I always think rating of Robshaw is proportional to rugby knowledge. This definitely backs it up.

Quite. i.e. if you know anything about rugby then you know he is pretty rubbish.

Stop trying to be clever doesn't suit you

None of your posts are anything but an England inferiority complex. Not sure that counts as knowledge.

You're right you don't know anything thumbsup

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 2:27 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:...I just keep hearing he does the unseen work...
Nothing unseen about clearing up bad ball. I wouldn't claim to be a great analyst of the game. I'm just going by the number of times I start panicking when it looks like we are about to screw up, and it's often Robshaw who gets us out of trouble.


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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 3:27 pm

I just think we need something more, we have enough work horses in the pack. Somebody a bit more dynamic, more powerful or better at the breakdown.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by lostinwales on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 4:17 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:...I just keep hearing he does the unseen work...
Nothing unseen about clearing up bad ball. I wouldn't claim to be a great analyst of the game. I'm just going by the number of times I start panicking when it looks like we are about to screw up, and it's often Robshaw who gets us out of trouble.


When I was young we had Dean Richards. A man who is the very definition of 'not mobile' and yet he always seemed to be where the ball was. Robshaw is like that too

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Scottrf on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 9:50 am

So George I think should be starting hooker now, but he needs to prove he can last past 50 minutes.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by propdavid_london on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 10:21 am

Yeah - I think EJ will stick with his Hartley-George combo, at least for this year (or his hand is forced by injury).

Any other injuries that might impact the AI squad after last weekends European round?

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by yappysnap on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 11:12 am

I think to say Robshaw is average or that he has no strengths is doing him a disservice. Yes a few players can at times out perform him at certain things, but they lack his consistency, and his low error count.

Who would you have instead Pooly?

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 11:51 am

I don't think he's average, more an average Int. To get to the next level I think we need better on the flanks than Robshaw and Haskell. Who? I don't know.....it's up to EJ to develop I guess.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by propdavid_london on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 12:11 pm

There are a lot of guys in the pipeline - The Currys, Mercer, Underhill are youngsters doing really well at quite frankly a very young age for such a punishing position. Robshaw and Haskell will continue to be used until one of the others steps up full time I am sure.
Others Like Hughes, Billy V and Clifford aren't exactly old either - add to that Simmons and James Chisholm and other 2nd row hybrids like Itoje then there is a very youthful looking back row stock.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by cascough on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 12:59 pm

Poorfour wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:I'm with the "don't rate Robshaw too highly" camp. This 95% theory is interesting. He tends to plod through games doing nothing particularly great and nothing particularly bad.

That's your perception. As fans we tend to overvalue the stuff that gets on highlights reels, and undervalue the less flashy stuff. What the stats say is a bit different. I think it was Green and Gold did the analysis before the last RWC and what they found was that Robshaw gets involved in the game - whether tackling, carrying or hitting rucks - about 30% more often than a typical starting international. It's equivalent to having an impact sub on the pitch for the full 80 minutes.

That's hardly plodding - but it's not glamorous. A lot of it is hitting rucks and either securing the ball or slowing it down. I've seen another analysis that says his effectiveness at doing this (as opposed to being a ruck inspector) is also very high. Or there was the comparison with Armitage in the HEC pool stages a couple of years ago. Steffon made 4 times as many turnovers, but gave away 4 times as many penalties.

Contrast that with Underhill, who flies around the pitch hitting anything that moves like a miniature Haskell, but often gets injured and sometimes does the wrong thing like flying out of the line too early. The Currys are better on that front - but in an increasingly attritional and technical game the value of taking the right risks shouldn't be underestimated.

Great post.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Cumbrian on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 2:07 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't think he's average, more an average Int. To get to the next level I think we need better on the flanks than Robshaw and Haskell. Who? I don't know.....it's up to EJ to develop I guess.

This would be my reading of things too. Robshaw has been a decent servant and he does a lot of what has been quoted on here very well, but if we want to be the best in the world we need that little bit extra. I don't know whether that is through physical prowess, game reading or leadership, we just need a bit more.

I'm not saying that I would drop him immediately. I think he could help guide his long term replacement(s) into the team, as he progresses into his 30s (as is natural) but when his obvious successor does present himself we cannot let sentiment get in the way.
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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 9:30 am

I have a suspicion (if everyone stays fit) the back row could be:

6 Robshaw 7 Underhill 8 Hughes
18 Curry

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by propdavid_london on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 9:46 am

I think you are right GF - cant see many other combinations. Unless EJ wants to flit with the Itoje/Lawes option at no.6

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by yappysnap on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 9:52 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't think he's average, more an average Int. To get to the next level I think we need better on the flanks than Robshaw and Haskell. Who? I don't know.....it's up to EJ to develop I guess.

So he's not as good as some mysterious 'other' player. I see.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by yappysnap on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:03 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:I have a suspicion (if everyone stays fit) the back row could be:

6 Robshaw 7 Underhill 8 Hughes
18 Curry

Still not sold on Underhill yet, yes he's an excellent tackler and hard working, but I don't see enough from the rest of his game yet to get him that 7 shirt. Especially alongside Robshaw. It'd be the Tom Wood situation again, not enough point of difference for the two to work.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by beshocked on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:06 am

With England being well stocked in the 2nd row you are right propdavid_london.

England might use either Itoje or Lawes at 6.

Both players started at 6 on the weekend afterall.


With Isiekwe doing well, it makes me more confident about wanting to rest Lawes and Itoje at least vs Samoa and Argentina.

I'd pick Isiekwe and Kruis with Launchbury on the bench.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Scottrf on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:11 am

beshocked wrote:I'd pick Isiekwe and Kruis with Launchbury on the bench.

That's going to ruffle some feathers.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:18 am

yappysnap wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:I have a suspicion (if everyone stays fit) the back row could be:

6 Robshaw 7 Underhill 8 Hughes
18 Curry

Still not sold on Underhill yet, yes he's an excellent tackler and hard working, but I don't see enough from the rest of his game yet to get him that 7 shirt. Especially alongside Robshaw. It'd be the Tom Wood situation again, not enough point of difference for the two to work.

He's a young version of Haskell. That's why I think he'll be in there. Plus Eddie will be working on other aspects of his game.
Ive said previously...I would be starting Curry, as I think he is WAY ahead of Underhill ability wise, (turnover wise and intelligence at the breakdown) , and he's still very strong in the tackle etc but I just think Jones will plump for a Haskell type player. Tackle tackle tackle ala the Australia tour.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:22 am

beshocked wrote:With England being well stocked in the 2nd row you are right propdavid_london.

England might use either Itoje or Lawes at 6.

Both players started at 6 on the weekend afterall.


With Isiekwe doing well, it makes me more confident about wanting to rest Lawes and Itoje at least vs Samoa and Argentina.

I'd pick Isiekwe and Kruis with Launchbury on the bench.

I agree, theres no point risking anyones fitness. If Lawes is knackered don't play him. Second row is one position where we genuinely have top class in bucketloads. We don't need to risk anyone.

I would have no problem with Isiekwe and Kruis.

However it will be interesting to see where Jones goes with this.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by Scottrf on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:23 am

Hopefully Lawes gets some rest vs Clermont. Why we didn't pull him off vs Sarries I have no idea. Idiotic.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:25 am

And another question...Henry Slade?

Do we have to find space for him at 13 now?

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by propdavid_london on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:47 am

yappysnap wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:I have a suspicion (if everyone stays fit) the back row could be:

6 Robshaw 7 Underhill 8 Hughes
18 Curry

Still not sold on Underhill yet, yes he's an excellent tackler and hard working, but I don't see enough from the rest of his game yet to get him that 7 shirt. Especially alongside Robshaw. It'd be the Tom Wood situation again, not enough point of difference for the two to work.
I see Underhill being given the same remit as Haskell on the Oz tour - tackle everything 'aggressively'.
I don't see the comparison with Tom Wood - Tom was a different kind of defensive player.

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Re: England's Elite Performance Squad - 2017/18

Post by propdavid_london on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 10:48 am

Sorry GF - just seen you posted similar

-------

http://www.606v2.com/viewtopic.forum?t=66672

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