Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

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Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by LondonTiger on Fri 02 Feb 2018, 11:08 am

First topic message reminder :

When:
Sunday 04 February 2018 15:00 GMT, 16:00 (Local time)


Where:
Stadio Olimpico, Viale dei Gladiatori, Rome, Italy


TV:
ITV, FR2, TV3, DMAX, NBC


Officials:
Referee: Mathieu Raynal (France)
Assistant 1: Jérôme Garcès (France)
Assistant 2: Nic Berry (Australia)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)


Head to Head:
Played - 18
Wins - England 18
Tries - Italy 7, England 48


Teams:

Italy
15 Matteo MINOZZI (Zebre Rugby Club, 3 caps)*
14 Tommaso BENVENUTI (Benetton Rugby, 45 caps)*
13 Tommaso BONI (Zebre Rugby Club, 8 caps)*
12 Tommaso CASTELLO (Zebre Rugby Club, 5 caps)
11 Mattia BELLINI (Zebre Rugby Club, 8 caps)*
10 Tommaso ALLAN (Benetton Rugby, 33 caps)
9 Marcello VIOLI (Zebre Rugby Club, 8 caps)*
8 Sergio PARISSE (Stade Francais, 129 caps) - capitano
7 Renato GIAMMARIOLI (Zebre Rugby Club, 1 cap)*
6 Sebastian NEGRI (Benetton Rugby, 2 caps)
5 Dean BUDD (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps)
4 Alessandro ZANNI (Benetton Rugby, 99 caps)
3 Simone FERRARI (Benetton Rugby, 8 caps)
2 Leonardo GHIRALDINI (Stade Toulosain, 89 caps)
1 Andrea LOVOTTI (Zebre Rugby Club, 20 caps)*

16 Luca BIGI (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps)
17 Nicola QUAGLIO (Benetton Rugby, 2 caps)*
18 Tiziano PASQUALI (Benetton Rugby, 2 caps)
19 George BIAGI (Zebre Rugby Club, 19 caps)
20 Maxime MBANDA’ (Zebre Rugby Club, 11 caps)*
21 Edoardo GORI (Benetton Rugby, 65 caps)*
22 Carlo CANNA (Zebre Rugby Club, 25 caps)
23 Jayden HAYWARD (Benetton Rugby, 3 caps)


England
15 Mike Brown (Harlequins 64 caps)
14 Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby 28 caps)
13 Ben Te'o (Worcester Warriors 8 caps)
12 Owen Farrell (Saracens 53 caps)
11 Jonny May (Leicester Tigers 29 caps)
10 George Ford (Leicester Tigers 40 caps)
9 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers 73 caps)
1 Mako Vunipola (Saracens 44 caps)
2 Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints 89 caps)
3 Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers 77 caps)
4 Joe Launchbury (Wasps 47 caps)
5 Maro Itoje (Saracens 14 caps)
6 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints 61 caps)
7 Chris Robshaw (Harlequins 59 caps)
8 Sam Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs 3 caps)


16 Jamie George (Saracens 20 caps)
17 Alec Hepburn (Exeter Chiefs uncapped)
18 Harry Williams (Exeter Chiefs 5 caps)
19 George Kruis (Saracens 21 caps)
20 Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby 3 caps)
21 Danny Care (Harlequins 76 caps)
22 Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby 35 caps)
23 Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs 23 caps)


Last edited by LondonTiger on Fri 02 Feb 2018, 1:10 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Heaf on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:19 pm

I can't see anything other than a big win for Wales over Italy tbh ..

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by TightHEAD on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:21 pm

If Italy get ahead they will be hard to beat. England dodged a bullet today.
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by kingelderfield on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:21 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Midfield defence looks better to me when Joseph is there.

Agreed. Honestly I've always thought Joseph was class. I'd just wish Tuilagi came back to offer a genuine challenge and alternative solution.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by doctor_grey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:22 pm

Scottrf wrote:
lostinwales wrote:I dunno about Watson MOM but he's a great winger

Should be Ford. Created the overlap for the first try, scored his own after putting Farrell through, created the one at the end with the over the top pass etc...
Ford?  

Arrgggh.  That little creampuff kept passing to guys running forwards who were about to get hammered.  Does Ford have it in for those poor guys?  And we lost possession a number of times because we lost the ball forwards or the Italian defense got their hands on the all and the England runner couldn't release.  It would have been OK to continue the straight ahead running to free the outside backs, but just more patient.  Could have accomplished the same thing.  

Arrgh, the little cumquat.  Indeed he can make great passes and is a good runner.  But we need to put a head on those shoulders (one with a brain in it preferably).  It would have cost us against a better opponent, methinks.  I was watching with my Rugby club and all the Irish guys were loooooving George Ford.

Now I know I am clearly in the minority.  I happily await the slings and arrows from any and all..................

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:25 pm

TightHEAD wrote:If Italy get ahead they will be hard to beat. England dodged a bullet today.

Don't tell me Eddie has brought his side arm to the game. That lad is mad. I hope they were only blanks. We'll know later when the 'injury' list is released.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by nathan on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:29 pm

SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.

That's a win ratio, I never said they wouldn't win I said its not a dead cert to put 60+ points on them.

Anyhow, back to the topic.

Thought Simmons did well. Jj certainly made a difference when he came on.

Ford played well

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:31 pm

doctor_grey wrote:  I happily await the slings and arrows from any and all..................

Then allow me to get the ball rolling...WTF? Whatever Ford may lack it's clearly not a rugby brain and that is one of the most staggering suggestions I've seen from a rugby fan in a long, long time. Also the idea that he is a creampuff when he's almost universally praised for his willingness to put his tiny frame on the line (he's basically the anti-Mallinder) might well be second.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by nathan on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:33 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

Haha are some of you still running this trend? Wales might actually win a game by playing well one day, hopefully in my lifetime... but to answer your question, no. It's not just based on that game. It's based on club and international games across this entire season, and the fixtures between the two over the last 3 seasons; the same players are still playing each other. I've mentioned club form because this season it is relevant for Wales with the style they're adopting and because of the number of Scarlets in the team. You're quite welcome to disagree and say Wales will lose of course, but with such a daft opinion comes a response. and we know how you guys don't like a fair and accurate response if the previous match thread is anything to go by Wink.

I never said Wales would lose, just don't think it will be a 60+ win. Until after the next round we wont know how bad Scotland were or how good Wales were.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:37 pm

SecretFly wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:If Italy get ahead they will be hard to beat. England dodged a bullet today.

Don't tell me Eddie has brought his side arm to the game.  That lad is mad.  I hope they were only blanks.  We'll know later when the 'injury' list is released.

I thought that like most people both his arms were on his sides, do you have one in a different place?

Looking at the way Ireland used their forwards to go forward, I would think England looked fresh and played the ball wide by comparison, the weather needs to be taken account but Ireland play that way in summer.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:38 pm

nathan wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.

That's a win ratio, I never said they wouldn't win I said its not a dead cert to put 60+ points on them.


Grand...but even isolating that aspect. In their last four meetings, Wales got past 60 twice...once at home and once at Rome. So, again, it's doable for them and not an unreasonable prediction.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by LondonTiger on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:42 pm

Thinking about the "undroppables":

Hartley - good game. Strong at set piece and willing worker in the loose. Belied his club form and deserves his start next week.

Cole - As above really.

Brown - so so. Some odd errors, but usually solid when needed. Will not be dropped for Wales, but easy to see why Watson and Nowell appeal.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by GeordieFalcon on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:45 pm

Brown was worse of those 3 today LT.  

Cole had a very good game..carrying more than I've seen him

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:46 pm

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:If Italy get ahead they will be hard to beat. England dodged a bullet today.

Don't tell me Eddie has brought his side arm to the game.  That lad is mad.  I hope they were only blanks.  We'll know later when the 'injury' list is released.

I thought that like most people both his arms were on his sides, do you have one in a different place?

Looking at the way Ireland used their forwards to go forward, I would think England looked fresh and played the ball wide by comparison, the weather needs to be taken account but Ireland play that way in summer.

Hmm.  You're the one that says England dodged a bullet.  I'm the one that says England yawned through the game and still couldn't avoid scoring handsomely.  Like I said on another post, Ireland and France got all the criticism yet their game had a genuine Test game feel...real seismic hits, real sweat from effort, real blood, real HIA knee injuries and real big time drama.  
I'm complimenting England, like I've been doing for most of the week.  I say they didn't even really have to get out of 2nd gear much - I wish they had and scored a few more tries to help me in that prediction thread fun ...but the real man's game of the weekend was France/Ireland

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by lostinwales on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 5:59 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Brown was worse of those 3 today LT.  

Cole had a very good game..carrying more than I've seen him

Cole and Hartley both good (especially Cole) Interesting that George made a hash of an attacking lineout. Harry Williams had a great cameo as well. He looks useful. Mako was brilliant

Brown was so so. Not his best game at all.

Lawes was good for what he was. Robshaw - normal for him (as in very good) Maro unusually the worst of the pack.

Simmonds. Top runner on both sides (80m) top tackler with 23 tackles and 2 tries. A pretty useful 6N debut. To be honest I didn't notice him until the end of the game when he got the two tries and set up Nowell for another.

This game did make me think about what makes England so dangerous in attack, and it is as much to do with Ford's passing and vision as any other factor.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by nathan on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 6:06 pm

SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.

That's a win ratio, I never said they wouldn't win I said its not a dead cert to put 60+ points on them.


Grand...but even isolating that aspect.  In their last four meetings, Wales got past 60 twice...once at home and once at Rome.  So, again, it's doable for them and not an unreasonable prediction.

So it's 50/50

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Scottrf on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 6:08 pm

50/50 if you look at last four games. 20% if you look at 10. 12% if you look at them all.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by LondonTiger on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 6:08 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Brown was worse of those 3 today LT.  

Cole had a very good game..carrying more than I've seen him

I agree. While Williams was promising, thought Cole was very good. Hartley, purely imo, was markedly better than his replacement and Brown was ok but not as solid as usual.

Whilst two of them may keep the detractors at bay for a week, calls for Brown to go will not subside. He will be picked however, and really there are as many reasons for keeping him as dropping him.

Doubt we will see many, if any, unforced changes - but we will need to see improved performances.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 6:18 pm

nathan wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.

That's a win ratio, I never said they wouldn't win I said its not a dead cert to put 60+ points on them.


Grand...but even isolating that aspect.  In their last four meetings, Wales got past 60 twice...once at home and once at Rome.  So, again, it's doable for them and not an unreasonable prediction.

So it's 50/50
Laugh Now I know how a dentist feels. Yeah, 50/50 A 50% chance of getting to 60+. Hell, I'm done with this. I'll let Mikey do his own reasoning from here on in Wink

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by nathan on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 7:01 pm

Well yes 50/50 based on selective statistics

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by doctor_grey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 7:14 pm

Fuzzy Dunlop wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:  I happily await the slings and arrows from any and all..................

Then allow me to get the ball rolling...WTF? Whatever Ford may lack it's clearly not a rugby brain and that is one of the most staggering suggestions I've seen from a rugby fan in a long, long time. Also the idea that he is a creampuff when he's almost universally praised for his willingness to put his tiny frame on the line (he's basically the anti-Mallinder) might well be second.
Ok, I will admit calling him a creampuff is a little over the top.  His defense was never O'Gara like and has improved.  He is willing and takes the hits in stride.  

I agree in open spaces he sees the game extremely well, and has the pass to deliver on it.  My criticism was about his decision-making in tight quarters feeding the ball to players who had nothing on and got slammed a nanosecond after receiving the ball.  In some cases it led to turnovers, and especially so when England was in a good attacking position.  Against a better team, Ireland in particular, this will be a problem.  Ford has got to see this and not make that final pass.  

And no, I don't see him as Rugby's answer to Einstein.  I think he is an instinctive player with very good field vision when things are opening up.  Not in tight.  Against Ireland, I think this is where the game will be won or lost.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by majesticimperialman on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:02 pm

A great game today and a good win for England. Italy was a far better team this year than they was last year. put England under some pressure for while, but then the finishers came on and finish the game off.


If Italy play the same way against Scotland, and Scotland play the same as they did against Wales, then it will be an Italy win for me.

England will have to step up next week against Wales, as this Welsh side is looking very good. (IMO.) Or was it that Scotland made them look better than they are?

We will see next week i guess.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Scottrf on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:04 pm

Italy were 10 points closer last year, away from home. Far better?

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:04 pm

I was happy with that. It was close for a bit, as I expected. They played well. We Played pretty well. We killed them off. Simmonds was ace. Back 3 and Ford-Farrell did well. Job done, lots to do for Wales
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:07 pm

Scottrf wrote:Italy were 10 points closer last year, away from home. Far better?

Both sides played a lot better than last year, we just had more potential to play to
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:14 pm

SecretFly wrote:
WELL-PAST-IT wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:If Italy get ahead they will be hard to beat. England dodged a bullet today.

Don't tell me Eddie has brought his side arm to the game.  That lad is mad.  I hope they were only blanks.  We'll know later when the 'injury' list is released.

I thought that like most people both his arms were on his sides, do you have one in a different place?

Looking at the way Ireland used their forwards to go forward, I would think England looked fresh and played the ball wide by comparison, the weather needs to be taken account but Ireland play that way in summer.

Hmm.  You're the one that says England dodged a bullet.  I'm the one that says England yawned through the game and still couldn't avoid scoring handsomely.  Like I said on another post, Ireland and France got all the criticism yet their game had a genuine Test game feel...real seismic hits, real sweat from effort, real blood, real HIA knee injuries and real big time drama.  
I'm complimenting England, like I've been doing for most of the week.  I say they didn't even really have to get out of 2nd gear much - I wish they had and scored a few more tries to help me in that prediction thread fun ...but the real man's game of the weekend was France/Ireland

I can see why with something on the line, and te last 10 mins were exciting, but the first 70 have put my fiancée off rugby for life, they were just purist but for me bereft of any tensions. France were brave but offered nothing at all, Ireland predictable but didn’t need more and France couldn’t handle an Ireland in 1st gear. What that means is that irwland are actually very good, as soon as they needed more they have it, but it was a dull game until one moment of magic and the first bit of spark. Prior to that it was no more of a contest than the other games despite the score line saying otherwise
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:18 pm

I want Wales to lose to Italy, but i expect they will won big. Saying that this is based on 22/25 matches being wins is a bit silly though, on that basis how many did you expect England to win by, Mikey?
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:34 pm

ChequeredJersey wrote:I want Wales to lose to Italy, but i expect they will won big. Saying that this is based on 22/25 matches being wins is a bit silly though, on that basis how many did you expect England to win by, Mikey?

Apologies to Mikey, Chequered, but I think it was me that based it on a 22 wins out of 25 match ratio - not Mikey.

I'm neutral and I think Wales will wipe the floor with Italy. It really doesn't matter what stats you want to use to help the belief along, it's what I believe.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:38 pm

It’s certainly very likely. Italy will have to kill off any possession Tom welsh back 3 which i don’t think they can unless they have another “special tactic”.

Adams and Evans in attack look a scary prospect and the gameplan, based on one game so far, seems to be to get the ball
To them early now with an attacking 10!
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Exiledinborders on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:40 pm

SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.
That is illogical.

England have a 100% record against Italy. How does Wales' relatively poor record lead you to think they will get a bigger win than England?

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by kingelderfield on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:40 pm

nathan wrote:
kingelderfield wrote:All told both Ford and Farrell have kicked far to much possession away, more often than not they've been poor kicks giving us little chance of competing when we should have the confidence to attack much much more with ball in hand.
The AB's would kill us with the amount of attacking opportunities we're presenting Italy.

But we are not playing the all blacks so it's a pointless argument.

What a truly brilliant response nathan, how clever you are.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by The Oracle on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:45 pm

Exiledinborders wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.
That is illogical.

England have a 100% record against Italy. How does Wales' relatively poor record lead you to think they will get a bigger win than England?

Cos when we’re good we’re really good, and when we’re bad we’re really bad! We’re no steady Eddie types!

Only joking. Think it’s too early to be making predictions about the wales v Italy game. I’ll wait for the team announcement and form first.
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 8:49 pm

Exiledinborders wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
nathan wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:Italy played well until the last 12 mins, thay have more than enough to hurt Scotland and Wales.

I can see Wales putting 60+ on Italy; seems to be the norm unless Howley is pulling the strings.

Based on one game where the Scots failed to turn up?

No, it's based on 25 meetings and 22 wins for Wales.  If that team today beat this Wales side this year then Wales should offer their spot to Georgia.
That is illogical.

England have a 100% record against Italy. How does Wales' relatively poor record lead you to think they will get a bigger win than England?

For Christ's sake! Are we still at this?

Okay, let me try it this way. England were not at the races today. They just seemed to be in casual practice match mode. They have many bigger chickens to pluck than Italy....and it was apparent to me that they were going through some motions and then killing off the nuisance fly buzzing around their ears. So the score could have been much more.
Wales don't seem to have the temperament to do an 'England' practice match mode with any team in the 6N. They're either always ON or their performance is weakened by injuries or cards etc. But they usually go full blast and see where it gets them.

That Italy side was impotent. If they meet a Wales in the mood that Scarlets and Gatland's Wales are in, I can see Wales hunting down more scores than England. I don't care if they get to 60 or not - not my point. My point is that the possibility is not a remote one. They've score over 60 in recent years both at home and in Rome.

Is that enough to clarify the point that it isn't outrageous that Wales might score 60 against Italy?

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Mr Bounce on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 9:02 pm

Well I thought the game fizzled only in the first 20 and last 15 for England. Aside from that there was FAR too much possession kicked away straight into the arms of the waiting Italians, who were only too happy to run it back. Defence out wide was poor.

Why do we feel the need to kick so often rather than use the forwards to reset and go again? It was working beautifully, then we started kicking it to the opposition. A lot.

There were always going to be silly errors (there always are) but the overall intensity just wasn't there. I expected us to be ruthless. We weren't. Certain players need to be taking a long hard look at themselves...

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Scottrf on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 9:05 pm

Yeah I get the kicking if we aren't getting anywhere. But we were. Every time we tried.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by TightHEAD on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 11:00 pm

Jj has to start for me, we looked better with him on the field both defensively and in attack, to be honest I didn't notice Te'o today
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Feb 2018, 11:06 pm

TightHEAD wrote:Jj has to start for me, we looked better with him on the field both defensively and in attack, to be honest I didn't notice Te'o today

Unless we find another carrier (like start Williams I guess), that does lead us light on carrying power. Would really need Mako to have a huge game, Launch too and Brown to step up
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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 8:38 am

I was very sceptical about Te'o starting, especially after so long away from any match time. I listened to what Jones and pundits had to say about what he would bring to the side and the differences between him and the likes of JJ (and Slade, Daly etc) and thought I would wait and see how things panned out.

The argument was that with two distributors at 10/12 (noting both ran more than usual) England needed a player in the midfield who would fix the defence, rather than players like JJ who use their footwork and outside break which can allow defences to continue to drift.

In the first 10 minutes Te'o had carries that while only making a few metres each gave quickly recycled ball and kept the Italians honest in defence. Without runners like him available as options I do not feel the first two tries would have been scored. After a bright start we lost all intensity for far too long. The players seemd to go "cold" during the long break for Youngs injury and for some reason we were getting slower ball for the rest of that half. Te'o then saw little of it and drifted out of the game.

Joseph came on against a tired defence and as things were picking up for England, he looked good but it could be argued that the hard work had been done by the starters.

Still not sure Te'o is the right man for the team, but so long as the Ford/Farrell axis is maintained someone like him is probably needed.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by Scottrf on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 8:50 am

We have 8 forwards to fix defenders, the way we use them there's normally 2 forward options available in attack at any point. I don't think he's absolutely necessary but he's been pretty good for England.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by BamBam on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 9:26 am

Can only echo what has already been said

Positives
Ford/Farrell had plenty of time on the ball and used it well
Simmonds looks very good when space is available
Front row looked good in the set piece and the loose

Negatives
Midfield defence
Still not convinced on the balance from 4-8

Much bigger challenges ahead anyway

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by cascough on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 9:45 am

Before the game I said Italy were garbage and that the Italy will live with you for 60 mins was a myth.

Clearly, the scores were close for 60 mins, but I'm really frustrated as to why. I thought we should have had them dead and buried before half time but we took our foot off the gas a bit. Yes Italy played some good stuff when they got the ball, and they should be credited for that, but their scrum was dodgy, and their discipline and fitness not good enough. Italy have got 3 away games up next against Ireland, France and then Wales. I expect England's win to be amongst the narrowest of those 4 results.

In a way, it was the perfect first hit out for England. Bonus point, reasonable points differential, and away game down and still plenty of work-ons to stay hungry this week.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by SecretFly on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 9:52 am

cascough wrote:Before the game I said Italy were garbage and that the Italy will live with you for 60 mins was a myth.

Clearly, the scores were close for 60 mins, but I'm really frustrated as to why. I thought we should have had them dead and buried before half time but we took our foot off the gas a bit. Yes Italy played some good stuff when they got the ball, and they should be credited for that, but their scrum was dodgy, and their discipline and fitness not good enough. Italy have got 3 away games up next against Ireland, France and then Wales. I expect England's win to be amongst the narrowest of those 4 results.

In a way, it was the perfect first hit out for England. Bonus point, reasonable points differential, and away game down and still plenty of work-ons to stay hungry this week.

Is you the famous Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde?

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by dummy_half on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 11:59 am

It's difficult to know what to make of that match. England started fast with Watson's first try in their first attack, and were clinical in taking their opportunities, but had long spells (especially both sides of half time) where they didn't create much and came under some pressure from the Italians both through the midfield and finding space outside our wingers.

I'm not sure if it was a case of playing in 3rd gear knowing it would be enough in the end, or that Italy played well until the difference in quality off the bench told. I think we'll know a lot more after next week.

A few more specific comments:
Simmonds definitely brings something, but I think he would benefit from playing alongside a carrier like Billy V who can tie in defences and create holes for Simmonds to exploit.

Still not entirely sold on playing a lock at 6, but otherwise the set pieces went OK and didn't drop off when the replacement front row came on.

Te'o did his job for the first hour, of trucking the ball up and tying in the inside defenders, but oh for Manu T being fit and on form to do the same job.

May was busy, and his interventions in midfield were instrumental in making the space for Watson's tries. Ford and Farrell did what they often do in terms of passing, and Farrell in particular added some incisive running lines.

Not sold on Watson at full back - not sure if it was his positioning, but kicks seemed to be getting to ground more when he was back there than with Brown.

I like the options of Nowell and JJ off the bench against tiring defences - both have excellent footwork to pick their way though the traffic.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

Post by lostinwales on Mon 05 Feb 2018, 12:32 pm

cascough wrote:Before the game I said Italy were garbage and that the Italy will live with you for 60 mins was a myth.

Clearly, the scores were close for 60 mins, but I'm really frustrated as to why. I thought we should have had them dead and buried before half time but we took our foot off the gas a bit. Yes Italy played some good stuff when they got the ball, and they should be credited for that, but their scrum was dodgy, and their discipline and fitness not good enough. Italy have got 3 away games up next against Ireland, France and then Wales. I expect England's win to be amongst the narrowest of those 4 results.

In a way, it was the perfect first hit out for England. Bonus point, reasonable points differential, and away game down and still plenty of work-ons to stay hungry this week.

I think that if Italian heads go down for the remaining fixtures then they could ship a lot of points, but if they don't I suspect those games will be closer. I just wouldn't underestimate this England's ability to manufacture and score tries.

I don't think we give England the credit that they sometimes deserve, because when the chances come and are taken the moves can be so quick that you don't see the work done and they 'don't count' because they look so easy. What we do see is the iffy kicking and so so defense in between those moments, and that is sometimes what sticks in the memory more. I really do believe we are capable at operating at a different level from the other 6N teams, when we are allowed to.

In this championship the biggest worry for me is Ireland just holding onto the ball for 70 minutes, but I suspect they will be playing for the GS and under such pressure that they will make more mistakes than normal. If they have to chase the game they will struggle. We will surely have tough times in all the other games, but right now we should be expecting wins every time.

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Re: Italy vs England - Matchday Thread

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