England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Page 3 of 18 Previous  1, 2, 3, 4 ... 10 ... 18  Next

Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Thu 11 Apr 2019, 8:52 pm

First topic message reminder :

Mirroring the thread I did for Wales, England have had huge strength in depth for the last 9 years or so. Under Lancaster it seemed to be a hindrance as much as a strength, with no-one really leaping out to claim key positions, cycling through the likes of Twelvetrees, Burrell, Barritt etc. in the centre.

Now, it feels like England do have some real test quality players who have grabbed shirts with both hands and are nailed on: the Vunipolas, Tuilagi, Lawes, and latterly players like May, Curry, and Underhill.

With that in mind...who makes England's 31 man squad based on who's fit and available (as well as who's out injured)? If you want to include who you'd personally pick as well that'd be interesting, but who do England fans think will be in that squad in Japan?

Also, who is in the starting 23 and who are the 6-7 reserve players who stand a good chance of a call up?

I've done it for Wales in the Wales thread - think it's looking very settled, with a few first 15 positions up for debate depending on opposition. From the outside England's squad looks a lot less settled or certain.

Squads ten to be:

17-18 forwards
5 Props
2 or 3 Hookers
5 Second rows
5 or 6 Back rowers

13-14 Backs
3 Scrum-halves
2-3 Fly-halves
3 Centres
5 Back 3

So who/what is the current England squad?

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down


England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 2:22 pm

king_carlos wrote:George, Best, Owens and McInally would all push the hooker argument very close but just miss out if I was selecting - I'd take Taylor, Guirado and Marx - as there are a lot impressive hookers  Whistle around currently. That list is with Coles left off due to the injuries as well!

Brave man leaving Coles off. I think he might genuinely be the best hooker I've ever seen. It's often a position of real class and depth - it's certainly felt like that since the early 00s, Keith Wood onwards, but Coles is just ridiculous. If there's on criticism of current hookers it's lineout throwing - lineouts obviously a lot more complex these days, but I do think there's a slight weakness there in maybe all of them.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 2:39 pm

Again it's unclear to you miaow who starts. That's not the same as the England coaches.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by BamBam on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 2:46 pm

George North is world class but Jonny May isn't? Is it 2019 or 2013?

BamBam

Posts : 15444
Join date : 2011-03-17
Age : 30

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 3:19 pm

He did update it during the six nations to say that in fact josh Adams is world class if that helps bam? Not sure if he thinks wing is strong enough to say whether Adams is currently up there with the best in the world even though he isn't at 20 caps yet or whether his world class has switched back to the best ever which any fly half around now needs to be measured against?
I imagine it'll be whichever allows him to talk England down the best.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 3:44 pm

I said Josh Adams is world class? Weird, don't remember that...just outright lying now, are we? Why not focus on the times you got things so horribly wrong? You know, things you ACTUALLY said? Rolling Eyes

Youve neatly demonstrated the point though, BamBam. Thanks very much.

If you were deemed one of the most potent attacking wingers in the world in 2013, you don't lose that in 2019 when you're a much better player. Wouldn't say North was World Class in 2013. Really was a defensive liability then. Now, severe head injuries considered as well, he's looking better than he ever has done - but going about it quietly whilst other players take the limelight, like Adams stepping up to international rugby with ease. Likewise, when you were known as a sidewys running headless chicken in 2013, you don't mitigate all your weaknesses by 2019, even if you've worked hard on improving. Otherwise, we're just talking about form. And that's really only one very small part of the discussion...

As I said, English fans aren't the best placed to judge their own players when they're desperate for success - they've been starved of it for so long since 2003, 2016/17 was drummed up to be better than it really was: the feast after the famine. I get that - it's fine. It's a unique situation where they had a period of being rubbish after SCW left, and then a very good team failed to win anything under Lancaster. Wales had a similar thing from 2013 o this season: it's frustrating when you don't see a good team rewarded. And when it does come, it's that aforementioned 'feast' mentality coming to the fore - talking about adding an 'extra' game in 2017 so England could play the ABs for the definitive 'best in the world' title. Will the Lions starting XV just be the England team etc? It's based on hope and focusing on the good parts, rather than the bad - as I said, I picked out three glaring mistakes by Jonny May, two of which led to tries, and I'm certain if you had the time and inclination, for every decent finish and run he has, there's a few fundamental errors that let him down. And this is meant to be a world class winger in the form of his life! Come on...be fair... Rolling Eyes  Rolling Eyes  Rolling Eyes

Anyway, detracting from the main point, which was depth and the ease with which England coaches rotate - are perhaps forced to rotate, by the media.

For those jingoistic English fans who want to continue churning out the same, tired lines, you bang whatever drum you want to, but I'll try to keep to the topic in hand.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 3:50 pm

Don't have to make things up miaow. You're that keen to have jabs it's inevitable that you forget what you're saying to get bites.
For instance it was all about how Jones hasn't introduced new players. Now it's too many new players.
The point in hand was that you don't know the best England line up. That's fair. The point you should be making is that Jones doesn't know what he wants. Don't see that myself. And now being forced to pick players by the media. Well. Just another silly point.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 3:55 pm

Just to take it back a step though. You start by saying England have had huge strength in depth for the last 9 years. You be then gone onto say that the current squad doesn't have that strength. Now you're focusing on the current feast over some famine. Doesn't quite seem to line up.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 4:02 pm

If you can find where I call Adams World Class you'll get a full apology. Otherwise (i.e. inevitably, because you're lying) this adds nothing to the topic, so let's just leave it.

Not too many new players - too many rotating options. Brown in: Brown out. Robshaw back in: Robshaw back out. Hartley captain: Hartley co-captain: Hartley dropped. The lack of actual young depth, i.e. players who weren't blooded by Lancaster, is surprisingly poor considering EJ's coming to the end of his 4th season at the helm.

I think it's quite clear there is no best English team. There's a core group of 5/6 players - as I picked out - as is the case with many other countries. And whilst there's then usually a pecking order for those other shirts, it doesn't appear to be 'knowable' with England - one minute Ashton's in, next he's dropped. What's interesting is that no team has won a RWC this way: it's very much about building a settled team, building depth behind it in the years prior to the RWC itself, and then managing that depth successfully. What England are doing is almost ripping up the rulebook: the interesting part about it is that it might just work. If England get on a winning streak and get the bounce of the ball, they have enough firepower to blast teams in the opening 20, and then hold out. Being an unknown quantity - not least in personnel - is difficult to prepare for.

So it might work out for EJ and England, but if it doesn't, his alternative methods will be hammered in the same way Lancaster was. If he gets the to a RWC final, he'll keep his job an be lauded a subtle genius. Often, the difference comes down to something as simple as the bounce of the ball, a few injuries, refereeing decisions etc. So far, however, in key games - against Wales in 2016, Ireland 2017, (2018 was a right off), and then Wales again this year, EJ's England have shown serious flaws: even when they won, such as as in 2016. Or 2018 SA - the difference between EJ keeping his job and having huge pressure put on him was whether Farrell's shoulder charge was actually officiated by the ref. As it wasn't, England won - that's what RWCs and coaching legacies can hinge on, but the nuance seems lost on you...

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 4:07 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Just to take it back a step though. You start by saying England have had huge strength in depth for the last 9 years. You be then gone onto say that the current squad doesn't have that strength. Now you're focusing on the current feast over some famine. Doesn't quite seem to line up.

I'd say under Lancaster they had more depth. Players look Wood, Croft, Robshaw, Haskell - all the usual suspects had a go in certain positions. 10 had Cipriani, Farrell, Ford, Burns - I'm sure there's a few more. It felt like there were two good test teams, similar to now, but no real standouts.

Now, there are a few more standout players for England. But there's a difference between having depth, and having strength in depth: it's not just numbers, it's also the solidity and reliability of those numbers. I.e. if your back ups haven't started a game of test rugby...it's anaemic depth.

Itoje's better than any lock Lancaster had, a fit Tuilagi walks all over the likes of Burrell, Twelvetrees, Barritt etc. who played loads of tests. Joseph and Salde are a step up on them: as is Watson over Goode, George over Tom Youngs etc. But where EJ has failed is to blood new players: he's clearly held a few of them back. Presumably as a way to not give too much away before Japan - I think most people know they're going to have more up their sleeves than simply long-ball rugby, even if that makes up a good percentage of their tactical game. Players like Spencer may well be key there - although, as I keep saying, it's a liability to take him and expect him to replicate his club form when shorn of the absolute dominance Saracens' pack gives him. But, had England not fallen off the cliff in 2018, EJ would have had an easier time integrating replacements - and so key positions would not only be 'backed up' properly. The good thing in defeat is it showed some players EJ had trusted - Brown, Care, Robshaw etc. - might not be up to the level of what he wanted. Better learning that last season than this year.

The feast:famine thing is talking about fans' perspective. Capiche?

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 4:13 pm

Oh it's in there somewhere. Think probably just after the Wales England game.
Going through that list though clearly doesn't touch upon the reasons for decisions. Summer tours and loss of form for robshaw and Brown. But also wanting to integrate new players either into those positions or into the squad ie Watson then Daly. Shields and Wilson.
George being integrated into the team. Hardly shocking as it was a gradual process.
The lack players brought into the squad and team by Jones? Off the top of my head genge George Williams sinckler itoje shields Wilson curry Underhill Mercer Simmonds Spencer Te'o slade Daly. A few of those may have had 1 or 2 caps under Lancaster ie you've already said the Uruguay game was worthless. That's obviously not a complete list. Injuries inevitably limit or give opportunities in places but those are the guys established as real options.more youth coming through as you've pointed out through his apprentice pick. Hill Smith at al.
I'd agree that triumph and disaster a small distance from each other to paraphrase Kipling. But that's a side step as you know you're not being consistent in your criticism.

Out of interest why do England now lack strength in depth in comparison to the 2011 team? Just seen your 2nd post on that. Most of those players are still available so we've even more strength in depth than at 2015 levels.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 4:16 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Oh it's in there somewhere. Think probably just after the Wales England game.

If by somewhere you mean your head... Whistle

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by king_carlos on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 4:30 pm

This thread is starting to make me miss the days when England didn't have strength in depth.

These conversation were much easier when the debate went along the lines of:

Q: Why is the back row so average?
A: Tom Rees is injured again.

king_carlos

Posts : 4173
Join date : 2011-05-31
Location : Work toilet

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by lostinwales on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 6:06 pm

Yet more thread derailing.

As an example of what is wrong with Miaow's list is the name of Faletau. I am not saying he isn't a very good player, but he's been injured a while and that rating is purely on historical performance rather than current level, while Miaow is also judging Billy V on his current performance rather than what he has done.

But what do we know, because as we are tole Miaow is always right.

lostinwales

Posts : 8411
Join date : 2011-06-09
Location : Out of Wales :)

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 6:20 pm

Na, Faletau's head and shoulders above Billy as a footballer. Billy's big and powerful and that means he's very effective but, again, you go by the criteria I said earlier, not just 'at their best'. Had Vunipola not been injured for the Lions, Faletau would have still been picked ahead of him. Again, it's a case of some fans not really knowing enough about the players of other countries - because Faletau is, overall, Wales' best player. Tipuric pushes him close, with Liam Williams doing so in the backs. Faletau's world class, by any definition: I'd make him the best #8 in World Rugby. His current injury-hampered season doesn't change that.

It's almost like you're just trying to make a dig at Wales because you dislike the idea that English players aren't as good as they're made out to be? Despite the overwhelming evidence that they underperform when the stakes REALLY matter i.e. when everyone else is fully firing as well. For reference: see the other posters projecting their own stances on to me, such as 'trying to run England down'. I'm not doing that at all - just get stuck in arguments with people who are unwilling to assess fairly. So be it.

Glad to have cleared that up for you.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Cyril on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 6:34 pm

Miaow, you are terrible for these forums. Unwilling to listen, claiming you’re always right, contrary to the extreme and blinkered to the point of parody. Practically every thread is just you bickering and baiting until other posters just give up. The fact that you appear to have a lot of time to kill and are relentless in having to have the last word is destroying any meaningful discussion. Hope you’re happy.

Cyril

Posts : 6674
Join date : 2012-11-16

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rugby Fan on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 6:39 pm

One thing supporters always do - perhaps English fans more than most - is wonder whether we are missing out on players who might well shine at Test level if just given a chance.

I must admit, I did think that about Mike Haley and Will Addison when they moved to Irish sides but, so far, they've both shown the kind of frailties which kept them out of contention in England. In Haley's case, technical shortcomings, which were on show against Saracens at the weekend, while Addison's body still keeps letting him down.

Both are young enough to overcome these issues and make an impact later but it is a reminder that not everyone is going to feel comfortable at Test level.

Rugby Fan

Posts : 5682
Join date : 2012-09-14

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 6:48 pm

David Strettle: Saracens and England winger to retire this summer - http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/48031090

Really nice to player to watch at his best. Never quite good enough at international level but a great club player.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 7:11 pm

Cyril wrote:Miaow, you are terrible for these forums. Unwilling to listen, claiming you’re always right, contrary to the extreme and blinkered to the point of parody. Practically every thread is just you bickering and baiting until other posters just give up. The fact that you appear to have a lot of time to kill and are relentless in having to have the last word is destroying any meaningful discussion. Hope you’re happy.


miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rugby Fan on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 7:12 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:David Strettle: Saracens and England winger to retire this summer - http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/48031090

Really nice to player to watch at his best. Never quite good enough at international level but a great club player.
The initial post-Woodward generation has really started to retire from the game recently. Looking at our 2008 Six Nations squad, most have gone. Here are the ones still playing meaninful Premiership rugby: Flood, Haskell, Care, Cipriani and Wigglesworth

Rugby Fan

Posts : 5682
Join date : 2012-09-14

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by yappysnap on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 12:56 am

Frak that makes you feel old doesn't it?! I remember all of those guys getting their first caps and being the next hot things.

Interesting isn't it that all of them went on to underachieve Internationally. Not a single one had a long steady England career for a number of reasons. Care probably comes closest for length of career, but a lot of that is off the bench. He never nailed a starting shirt, likewise Wigglesworth and Cips both started brightly before dropping away, Haskell moved and Flood was steady before losing out.

We all bang on about the latest players, but I bet very few will ever make it to 100 caps, even 70+ will be a push for a lot of them.

yappysnap

Posts : 11575
Join date : 2011-06-01
Age : 31
Location : Christchurch, NZ

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by king_carlos on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 2:21 am

yappysnap wrote:We all bang on about the latest players, but I bet very few will ever make it to 100 caps, even 70+ will be a push for a lot of them.
That's a really interesting point there, yappy. Looking at the current squad.

Farrell (70 caps), Youngs (85), Lawes (71), Mako (54) - Potential 100 cap players

Robshaw (66), Launchbury (58), Ford (55), May (45), Billy (41), George (37), Kruis (32), Nowell (33), Daly (30) - Good chance to break the 70+ cap mark you state

Manu (32) - Could break 50 caps but I don't think his body will allow for much more.

Itoje (27) - Probable England captain who should earn a lot of caps.

Slade (22), Hughes (22), Te'o (18), Shields (8) - I think those guys will fade out in the next RWC cycle.

Joseph (40), Watson (36) - Will depend on how they return from injury.

Lock is a difficult one to predict. Launchbury, Kruis and Lawes are all excellent players but in a very competitive position. One serious injury and a lad like Isiekwe could realistically leapfrog them in the next RWC cycle.

Harsh on Slade to say he will fade out but there are some good centres coming through in Marchant, Dingwall, Hutchinson, Lawrence. I reckon Slade and Manu will fade out around the same point as youngsters kick on. I rate both but just a hunch.

Back row is a nightmare to call. Tom Curry and Underhill I think will hang around for a good few years, they dominate tackles as few England flankers have for a long time. That would mean someone such as Ben Earl earning very few caps when he's a fantastic player.

The blindside shirt should see a big fight in the next RWC cycle. Ted Hill, Jack Willis and Alex Dombrandt should all be in with chances. Zach Mercer will come into the frame at 6 and 8. My bet would be on Mercer to get over 50 caps as he looks a very rounded player.

king_carlos

Posts : 4173
Join date : 2011-05-31
Location : Work toilet

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rugby Fan on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 7:33 am

yappysnap wrote:Frak that makes you feel old doesn't it?! I remember all of those guys getting their first caps and being the next hot things. Interesting isn't it that all of them went on to underachieve Internationally. Not a single one had a long steady England career for a number of reasons.
I thought Haskell and Cipriani would be England regulars. From the 2008 Six Nations squad, I also hoped Tait had cemented his place, that Tom Rees would be a star, and for Sinbad to get a chance.

Looking at other players who were capped between the 2007 and 2011 World Cups, many had more inconsistent careers than I expected. I assumed Foden, Armitage, Lawes, Ben Youngs, Ashton, Corbisiero, and Attwood were all capable of becoming fixtures but it didn't really happen for them as a group. Ben Youngs has a hatful of caps but regularly had dips in form. From that time, Hartley and Cole were more consistent selections, albeit discipline took Hartley out of consideration. When we look at our leadership (or lack of it) now then it's this era which seems a bit of a vacuum.

If you look at the 2009 Lions squad, players like BOD, POC, AWJ, Rob Kearney, Leigh Halfpenny, O'Gara, Stephen Jones, Adam Jones, Heaslip, Gethin Jenkins were all around at the same time, and I think they strike me as players who had, or developed, more stature on the pitch.

Rugby Fan

Posts : 5682
Join date : 2012-09-14

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 9:34 am

Let's look at the cap count, then:

Daly 30; Nowell 33, Slade 22, Tuilagi 32, May 45; Farrell 70 Youngs 85; Mako 53, Hartley 96, Sinckler 22; Kruis 32 Itoje 27; Curry 10 Wilson 13 Billy 41
Brown 72; Ashton 44, Joseph 40, Te'o 18, Cokanasiga 4; Ford 55 Care 84; Genge 9; George 37; Williams 17; Lawes 71 Launchbury 58; Underhill 7 Robshaw 66 Hughes 22.

My, miaow, what big hands you have. Two players with under 10 caps, 3 more with under 20. Ok, that counts as "some" - but none of them in the positions I would count as settled.

The general point that is critical here is that more than any other nation, England need 31 players who you would be happy to see start an international against a Top 10 side, because the route to the RWC is Argentina, France, QF, SF, Final on successive weeks.

In that context, not only does it not matter that it's "unclear" whether Kruis or Lawes (or for that matter Launchbury) should partner Itoje, it's a big positive. Lock is a position where England have 4 very strong players and you could pick any three on the teamsheet and no-one would have any worries about their capability. A pairing like Itoje and Kruis would be certain starters if they played for most other countries. That Lawes and Launchbury are challenging for their shirts is a measure of strength, not weakness.

It's similar with centre, hooker and fly half: there are enough permutations, and none of the sensible ones are a cause for concern.

What are the most difficult positions?

There isn't an experienced backup to Mako. England will feel Joe Marler's retirement quite keenly, especially if Mako picks up an injury. Likewise, not having a fully fit Billy forces a very different style of play. Yes, he's not as versatile as his cousin, yada yada yada. But just because you know what he's going to do, doesn't make him any easier to stop.

Is Sinckler's discipline (or at least, referees' perception of his discipline) an issue? Yes, and it's one that England need to address between now and the RWC. Refs have got a perception of him, and opposing players (not least AWJ) have started milking that perception, so he needs to start being squeaky clean. Is he nevertheless a certain starter? Yes, I think so. Williams is an impressive carrier but not as good at the setpiece and doesn't offer the distribution option that Sinckler does. A lot of the good stuff in England's attacking play in the 6N came through having Sinckler as first or second receiver to fix the defence and distribute.

The back row is the most open area, as everyone acknowledges. The 6 and 7 positions are not settled, mostly because England have not had all of their players fit at the same time in the last couple of seasons. However, for the first time in a while they have 5 players who can all cover the positions to a similarly high standard. While we all have our preferences, we can also be pretty confident that whoever emerges out of the training camp in possession of the shirt will do a good job. And even if they break down, there are good candidates on standby.

The preferred scrum half pairing is almost certainly Youngs and Care. The open concern is who starts if Youngs is injured. Care plays far better in the latter stages of a game when there's space for him to exploit, and none of the other backups has much experience.

On the wings, May and Nowell are pretty clearly the preferred starters when fit. The remaining area of concern is full back, where I think Daly just isn't secure enough in defence or under the high ball... but we only have one other player who has been proven at international level.






Poorfour

Posts : 4119
Join date : 2011-10-01

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by robbo277 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 9:50 am

Anthony Watson returning this week. If he's good to go it'll be good for him to get a few games under his belt before another break and then build back up for the World Cup. I'd probably expect to see him get some game time at 15 over the summer.

robbo277

Posts : 4653
Join date : 2011-06-06
Age : 31
Location : Brighton, England

https://twitter.com/#!/robbo277

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by BamBam on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 10:23 am

Does Watson meet miaow's arbitrary criteria for selection? If not, prepare to be patronised robbo

BamBam

Posts : 15444
Join date : 2011-03-17
Age : 30

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:03 am

Poorfour wrote:In that context, not only does it not matter that it's "unclear" whether Kruis or Lawes (or for that matter Launchbury) should partner Itoje, it's a big positive. Lock is a position where England have 4 very strong players and you could pick any three on the teamsheet and no-one would have any worries about their capability. A pairing like Itoje and Kruis would be certain starters if they played for most other countries. That Lawes and Launchbury are challenging for their shirts is a measure of strength, not weakness.

Good effort with the long comment - interesting reading. Trying to be less contentious but it feels like you're trying to justify why England don't have a settled first XV as a good thing, and finding logical reasons that fit that. Rather than all evidence pointing towards the need for stability for RWC success. As I said, this approach may work as EJ has had England go on a winning streak at the start of his tenure - might be able to do it again. The ability to rotate, say, Kruis and/or Lawes and/or Launchbury isn't the same as possibly having to move Daly back to the wing if they scrape past France but he has a defensive shocker etc.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:05 am

BamBam wrote:Does Watson meet miaow's arbitrary criteria for selection? If not, prepare to be patronised robbo

Not sure what this even means, but Watson's a very good player. Was probably being lined up for 15 before injury - is there still time to go with that?

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:13 am

What do you count as a settled first 15?

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:46 am

I've (actually...) already said, no point repeating it.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:50 am

Poorfour wrote:Is Sinckler's discipline (or at least, referees' perception of his discipline) an issue? Yes, and it's one that England need to address between now and the RWC. Refs have got a perception of him, and opposing players (not least AWJ) have started milking that perception, so he needs to start being squeaky clean. Is he nevertheless a certain starter? Yes, I think so.

Love the way Faf de Klerk's stomach smacked Sinckler's fist a few weeks ago. Milked indeed...

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:56 am

I've looked back and can't see where you've detailed what you mean by a settled side. Which post was it please?

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 12:39 pm

King -Carlos,

Harsh on Slade to say he will fade out but there are some good centres coming through in Marchant, Dingwall, Hutchinson, Lawrence. I reckon Slade and Manu will fade out around the same point as youngsters kick on. I rate both but just a hunch

Hutchinson has played all his age group rugby for Scotland so I would not count on him picking England if Scotland came for him first, very surprised they haven't already actually, he is pure class.

WELL-PAST-IT

Posts : 2249
Join date : 2011-06-01

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 1:26 pm

miaow wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Is Sinckler's discipline (or at least, referees' perception of his discipline) an issue? Yes, and it's one that England need to address between now and the RWC. Refs have got a perception of him, and opposing players (not least AWJ) have started milking that perception, so he needs to start being squeaky clean. Is he nevertheless a certain starter? Yes, I think so.

Love the way Faf de Klerk's stomach smacked Sinckler's fist a few weeks ago. Milked indeed...

It was a pretty mild bit of handbags in the grand scheme of things. Are you really saying that would have earned the same referee response for any player? Or the penalty he picked up against Clermont for pulling a player out of a maul? He's a strong guy, but I am not sure that rugby forwards cartwheel that dramatically without taking some part in it themselves. Players know that they can draw penalties against him if they react to what he does. He needs to be ultra careful about it because of that - but my point is that it's not all him. He's getting additional scrutiny - and something that borders on a presumption of guilt - from refs, and his opponents are making the most of it.

Poorfour

Posts : 4119
Join date : 2011-10-01

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 1:29 pm

Handbags? Sexist...

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 1:35 pm

What do you mean by settled first 15 miaow?

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Poorfour on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 1:38 pm

miaow wrote:
Poorfour wrote:In that context, not only does it not matter that it's "unclear" whether Kruis or Lawes (or for that matter Launchbury) should partner Itoje, it's a big positive. Lock is a position where England have 4 very strong players and you could pick any three on the teamsheet and no-one would have any worries about their capability. A pairing like Itoje and Kruis would be certain starters if they played for most other countries. That Lawes and Launchbury are challenging for their shirts is a measure of strength, not weakness.

Good effort with the long comment - interesting reading. Trying to be less contentious but it feels like you're trying to justify why England don't have a settled first XV as a good thing, and finding logical reasons that fit that. Rather than all evidence pointing towards the need for stability for RWC success. As I said, this approach may work as EJ has had England go on a winning streak at the start of his tenure - might be able to do it again. The ability to rotate, say, Kruis and/or Lawes and/or Launchbury isn't the same as possibly having to move Daly back to the wing if they scrape past France but he has a defensive shocker etc.

I'll go further. Not only is not having "a settled first XV" a good thing, in this particular context, it's a necessary thing if England want to reach the RWC final.

Every other serious contender for the title has a soft game in their last two pool matches; England have Argentina and France. That means they have to win 5 games in 5 weeks against top 10 opposition, whereas every other team has at least one game in those 5 weeks where they can play a weakened side.

They are not going to do that by relying primarily on fifteen players. They are going to have to rotate players in or out to manage injury and fatigue. Having a variety of players who can play each position, and a variety of combinations to suit different styles of game is a big positive and a necessity.

That's not to say that there aren't areas of concern. You're right to single out Daly. He's a very talented player, but he's not a fullback and won't cut it against top sides with good fullbacks of their own, as we have seen. The alternatives are Brown (who I think is almost certain to travel), Goode (who, for all Stuart Barnes's obsession with him, just hasn't played well enough at international level) and maybe Watson (who has looked promising there but has been out injured for a long time).

We also need a third scrum half who can open and control a game. Back row is, oddly, less of a concern. We have plenty of players who have shown they can do the job, it's just a question of who is fit and in form going into the tournament.

Poorfour

Posts : 4119
Join date : 2011-10-01

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rugby Fan on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 2:21 pm



Topsy Ojo another one retiring. Only a couple of caps, and that incident in New Zealand where he and Mike Brown picked up fines.

Rugby Fan

Posts : 5682
Join date : 2012-09-14

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 2:35 pm

Poorfour, you're confusing NOT having a settled first XV with the ability to replace the first choice players with an almost-but-not-quite-as-good-but-still-very-capable-and-experienced-test-player as and when necessary.

The locks are a a great example of where that is true - although play at tempo for long enough and Launchbury and Kruis struggle massively. It's the exception to the rule.

EDIT: missed out a key word

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 2:57 pm

But what do you mean by a settled first 15 miaow. Simple question.one you appear to be avoiding.

No 7&1/2

Posts : 18464
Join date : 2012-10-20

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by robbo277 on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 6:45 pm

I must admit I haven't read the whole thread, but here is my 2p.

My definition of settled side is if our next fixture was the World Cup, how easy would selection be? And ideally it would be a very easy selection if you had a very settled squad. But that's not the be all and end all.

For example, Romania might have a very settled starting XV, I have no idea. But they could have put out the same starting XV for the last 10 games. Doesn't mean if the next one was the World Cup final they'd have even half a hope.

There are some positive selection dilemmas for England. Sub props Genge or Moon and Cole or Williams? Lawes or Kruis? Underhill or Curry? Slade or Joseph? Cokanasiga or Ashton in the 31? These are positive dilemmas because he would be each option would be at least adequate.

There are a couple of areas where he has negative selection dilemmas. 15 is the starting place in most doubt. Brown is out of favour, his first choice back up Watson has missed a lot of rugby and his second choice back up Daly is a good rugby player who is still getting to grips with some of the bread and butter of full back play. This is a question he'll have to answer. Publicly he'll back Daly, but he backed Brown publicly until he dropped him.

The other issue is the second scrum half spot is not settled. He has a few options but it might come down to the least bad option. I have a feeling he'll flog Youngs through the tournament which could backfire, but he laid the groundwork for this in the Six Nations.

Ideally Eddie would have a 23 set. And maybe he does in his own mind. But I think he has a core of 35 ish players he's tested, he's happy with and will turn to during the tournament. From there he'll be hoping the team can settle together during the tournament. Certainly by the time you win a semi final (if England were to get that far) you'd have a pretty settled team and a good idea of who's making your team for that final.

robbo277

Posts : 4653
Join date : 2011-06-06
Age : 31
Location : Brighton, England

https://twitter.com/#!/robbo277

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by yappysnap on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 7:49 pm

I don't know if any side in the world has a settled 23 man team.

But all sides have a core of a team that they'll want to keep fit and ready for the RWC.

For England that's:
Mako
Sinkler
Itoje
Billy V
Youngs
Farrell
Tuilagi
May

Imo (I would add Brown to that list too personally). Those are the players that we really need for the RWC campaign and who if we miss them there's a drop off in skills or exp to the next guy. Every other country also probably has approx 8-10 players that the coaches know they really need if they're to make a run at the title, after those you can mix and match players, but that spine of the team is key.

yappysnap

Posts : 11575
Join date : 2011-06-01
Age : 31
Location : Christchurch, NZ

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by king_carlos on Wed 24 Apr 2019, 11:08 pm

These seem certain picks if fit:

1.Vunipola
2.George
3.
4.Itoje
5.
6.Wilson
7.
8.Vunipola

9.Youngs
10.Farrell

11.May
12.Tuilagi
13.Slade
14.
15.

Tighthead has three solid options who offer differences tactically. Sinckler is a wrecking ball but more inconsistent, Williams is very good in defence but offers less in attack and Cole is a rock at the scrum but offers less than both around the park. Not the worst place to be in.

The second lock spot and lineout leader is between Kruis and Lawes, both of whom are established internationals and test Lions. Not the worst place to be in.

Curry and Underhill are two quality opensides who offer similar skill sets. Not the worst place to be in.

That basically leaves full back as the big question. Stick with Daly? A recall for Brown? Can Anthony Watson make a miraculously quick return to form after a second Achilles injury? 

Daly seems nailed on to start but Jones isn't sure where. I think he's looked best for England on the wing. He also played every minute of the 2017 Lions test series on the left wing. Only Faletau, Farrell, JD2 and Daly played every minute of the tests.

king_carlos

Posts : 4173
Join date : 2011-05-31
Location : Work toilet

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by yappysnap on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 6:33 am

I would say Sinckler is a def starter, Jones rates him highly. And hes probably one of the best players in the squad alongside Mako.

yappysnap

Posts : 11575
Join date : 2011-06-01
Age : 31
Location : Christchurch, NZ

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rinsure on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 8:47 am

king_carlos wrote:These seem certain picks if fit:

1.Vunipola
2.George
3.
4.Itoje
5.
6.Wilson
7.
8.Vunipola

9.Youngs
10.Farrell

11.May
12.Tuilagi
13.Slade
14.
15.

So, I pretty much agree this is the spine of the side. Do we need to think about the best players in each remaining slot, or is there mileage in looking to pick on a horses-for-courses basis depending on the opposition / requirements? Let's think about the 14 shirt. Options might be one of Nowell, Brown, Daly and / or Cokanasiga, all of whom offer differing skill-sets and threats; Nowell and Brown tighter defence and solidity, and "nuggety" go forward aggression, Daly is probably the best all round footballer of the bunch, and Big Joe does what Big Joe does going forward, but might be viewed as more suspect in defence. Depending on what we need from each game, there are arguments for all of them. More or less the same goes for the 15 shirt, but I reckon we can drop Cokanasiga from that conversation!

Same for the tight head. Depends what we need. I agree Sinkler is *probably* first choice, but the others - as KC points out, have different skills. Against a hard scrummaging team expected to keep it tight, there would be an argument for starting Cole; in a looser game then Sinks has to be the option.

You get the drift. Do we need a settled 23, or can we adapt around the core starters?



Rinsure

Posts : 252
Join date : 2011-03-04

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by LondonTiger on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 9:07 am

Tom Curry, Jonny May & Mark Wilson nominated for the RPA England Player of the Year. 

Only England squad members get to vote so a nice one to win as in a team game the approval of your peers is really the best acknowledgment of individual performance.

LondonTiger
Moderator
Moderator

Posts : 20806
Join date : 2011-02-10

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by bluestonevedder on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 10:27 am

yappysnap wrote:I don't know if any side in the world has a settled 23 man team.

But all sides have a core of a team that they'll want to keep fit and ready for the RWC.

For England that's:
Mako
Sinkler
Itoje
Billy V
Youngs
Farrell
Tuilagi
May

Imo (I would add Brown to that list too personally). Those are the players that we really need for the RWC campaign and who if we miss them there's a drop off in skills or exp to the next guy. Every other country also probably has approx 8-10 players that the coaches know they really need if they're to make a run at the title, after those you can mix and match players, but that spine of the team is key.

Absolutely agree with this in that there are 'core' players.

I'd argue that if there's a consistent, settled 23, that there are perhaps problems looming in the player development process. Akin to England after 2003, the sudden departure of players due to injury or retirement scuppers the squad, and if you've been reliant on a settled squad there's really been no future proofing. As long as the core of the squad remains consistent and strong with a lot of experience, I don't think you need a completely settled 23.

bluestonevedder

Posts : 3828
Join date : 2011-08-22

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Exiledinborders on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 10:27 am

Rinsure wrote:
king_carlos wrote:These seem certain picks if fit:

1.Vunipola
2.George
3.
4.Itoje
5.
6.Wilson
7.
8.Vunipola

9.Youngs
10.Farrell

11.May
12.Tuilagi
13.Slade
14.
15.

So, I pretty much agree this is the spine of the side. Do we need to think about the best players in each remaining slot, or is there mileage in looking to pick on a horses-for-courses basis depending on the opposition / requirements? Let's think about the 14 shirt. Options might be one of Nowell, Brown, Daly and / or Cokanasiga, all of whom offer differing skill-sets and threats; Nowell and Brown tighter defence and solidity, and "nuggety" go forward aggression, Daly is probably the best all round footballer of the bunch, and Big Joe does what Big Joe does going forward, but might be viewed as more suspect in defence. Depending on what we need from each game, there are arguments for all of them. More or less the same goes for the 15 shirt, but I reckon we can drop Cokanasiga from that conversation!

Same for the tight head. Depends what we need. I agree Sinkler is *probably* first choice, but the others - as KC points out, have different skills. Against a hard scrummaging team expected to keep it tight, there would be an argument for starting Cole; in a looser game then Sinks has to be the option.

You get the drift. Do we need a settled 23, or can we adapt around the core starters?


Not that I expect Jones to have a moment of revelation but it is clear that Jones’s selections do not work. Farrell at ten needs a another playmaker and decision maker. At Sarries he has Barritt outside him and Goode behind him. Tuilagi does not provide the same rugby intelligence at twelve. Indeed he needs a leader telling him what to do. None of the England fullbacks have Goode’s rugby intelligence or playmaking ability.

The obvious answer is Goode. If not the go for a ten with more vision and leadership than Farrell which means Cipriani. Neither are going to happen of course.


Exiledinborders

Posts : 1575
Join date : 2012-03-18
Location : Scottish Borders

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 11:52 am

miaow wrote:As I said, English fans aren't the best placed to judge their own players

yappysnap wrote:I would say Sinckler is a def starter, Jones rates him highly. And hes probably one of the best players in the squad alongside Mako.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Rinsure on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 11:59 am

Exiledinborders wrote:None of the England fullbacks have Goode’s rugby intelligence or playmaking ability.

I do see your point, especially with the Saracens link, but I would contend that Daly is on a par with Goode in rugby intelligence (I've posted before about how I think Daly is the best "top two inch" player in the squad), and probably offers more threat in broken play with his pace. Coupled to his big boot...

Admittedly, he has "work-ons" under the high ball and his overall positioning, and doesn't seem to gel with Farrell in the way Goode does, but going forward in the categories picked, I put them on a par.

Rinsure

Posts : 252
Join date : 2011-03-04

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by miaow on Thu 25 Apr 2019, 12:04 pm

Slade is obviously the second-playmaker. Daly the third.

In reality, that's not the way England play though. They play very flat off 9 with a number of players - usually the forwards - providing the tip on passes at the last minute to release their strike runners.

We've seen very little playmaking whatsoever from England, but if they do go that way, Slade is the man, with Daly there as well.

miaow

Posts : 2670
Join date : 2011-03-31

Back to top Go down

England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad? - Page 3 Empty Re: England's strength in depth...and who makes their RWC squad?

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 3 of 18 Previous  1, 2, 3, 4 ... 10 ... 18  Next

Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum