Scotland post mortem

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Post by NeilyBroon on Sun 13 Oct 2019, 1:49 pm

First topic message reminder :

So we're oot.

Question is... what now?

Do we think toonie will stay? If he does take the can which seems quite likely then who do we get to replace him?

I think this has to be the end of a few players too. We can't keep picking people on past form.
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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 11:50 am

BigGee wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
BigGee wrote:I am pretty sure Toonie does not tell them to go directly into panic mode as soon as the opposition scores a try!

This exactly.

He does not tell players to drop passes, miss tackles e.c.t.......

Also, just to put it in, the last time Scotland lost to Italy Vern Cotter was in charge. I do not think Gregor Townsend has lost a fixture to a tier two side either, who was in charge when Scotland lost to Fiji in 2017 ?


Toonie was.

It was right at the beginning of his tenure. He beat a full strength Australia out there the week before!

So how does this work then ? Was the defeat to Fiji down to the lack of good work that VC did ? Was the triumph over Australia down to the good work of VC ?

Because I see a lot of you saying that VC was making improvements, and GT has botched it all up so to speak, but in my opinion, those two results just shows the up and downs of Scottish rugby, that has effected EVERY coach Scotland has had for the past 15/20 years. It would seem the players were more up to playing the Aussies, than they were for Fiji, and that is not a coaching issue, that is a player issue.

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Post by miaow on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:00 pm

George Carlin wrote:I just want to take people back to a few key dates:

30 September 2007: Wales 34-38 Fiji. Wales are knocked out of the World Cup at the pool stages.

01 October 2007: Gareth Jenkins sacked as Wales head coach in his Paris hotel room.

09 November 2007: A fat head coach of Waikato is appointed as new Wales coach. He is talented but untested at international level.

2008-2019: Wales have won four Six Nations titles, including three Grand Slams, and reached the semi-final of the 2011 World Cup.

My point is that rugby unions should aspire to better and recognise their mistakes. The only good reason for Toonie to take Scotland through the 2020 6N is because his successor is seeing out his notice period.

I do think all of this is fair, but Wales were Grand Slam champions 2 years before all that took place, and in the midst of what was probably a golden generation - I look at some of the players then, particularly a few backs, and think they'd be world class with the right mindset/coaching in the modern age (yes, specifically thinking of Henson, but also Shane, Stephen Jones, Peel...loads more like Byrne by 2007 as well). Scotland have a few...but not sure enough. Hogg? Russell? Jonny Gray? Watson, possibly Ritchie and Bradbury - although the latter two look good, the calibre of loose forwards in the modern age means their ability is now the norm, not the exception. Not quite enough quality in the team to think there's an upswing in the offing like Wales had, and the use of SH/project players probably shows that as well.

Scotland aren't quite at Wales' level financially as much as anything else. You can't beat yourself up over Cotter and how dreadful a decision that was - he was probably your Gatland, frankly. You just need to go out and find another one. I do think it's a useful comparison as there are many, many similarities between Townsend and Gareth Jenkins. An appointment based on sentiment and national pride. A desire to play 'the Welsh way' / 'progressive Scottish way'.

The times have changed, and what was amateurish in 2007 is not the same now, but Townsend strikes me as, effectively, a backwards step in the modern world of coaching - again, I link it to football and a coach who has some good traits, but doesn't learn/adapt/change/is fundamentally flawed. Like a poor Brendan Rodgers, expect Scotland aren't shooting fish in a barrel with Celtic at a time when there's no proper competition.

Huge chance to get this one right. Take the hit, allow Townsend to get a job in the ProD2 and see if he deserves another shot - he has to be accountable. Dodson's spoken twice about winning the WC these last two tournaments. However ridiculous that may seem, if that's the goal, Townsend had Scotland nowhere near it, so evidently he's failed.

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Post by miaow on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:04 pm

Also as an aside, I absolutely hate that post match conference from Townsend. I'd be raging with that.

It sounds weak but entitled.

Don't talk about how you'll 'learn' from this - don't talk as if it's for granted that you're still guaranteed the job. Don't talk about the 'positives'. Don't talk about how it was just small things that went wrong, you know what to change etc. Identifying what's wrong and actually doing it are two different things - there's been little evidence of that latter, clearly. I'd be so, so unhappy with that. Now's the time for admitting things were terrible and terminal and devastating, and everything was focused on this, this was the pinnacle of a 4 year cycle...

...not that 'oh, we're already looking ahead to the 6Ns. F the 6Ns. Every other 6Ns team will be in rebuilding mode where, yes, maybe you sneak a win against the Irish or Welsh or even the English. Because you haven't actually peaked at the WC, and you haven't swept out the old regime in preparation for the next WC.

Everything about that post match interview says 'I'm not accountable, I cannot see what is wrong, and I will keep making the same mistakes over and over and be content to keep making them while rejecting the responsibility for failure'.

So poor.

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Post by thebandwagonsociety on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:04 pm

Glasgow are a still a strong side to base a Test xv off of and Edinburgh (though the result on Friday wasn't great) have improved under Cockerill.
The tactic of give the ball to Russell or everyone stand aside and pass the ball to Hogg didn't work out. Because defenses keyed in on them, Horne had some productive patches of play. Putting a slow scrum-half together with a high tempo-outhalf put the breaks on a lot of Scotlands play.
If GT takes an honest hard luck at where they went wrong then he could right the ship and build Scotland for the future.

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Post by miaow on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:29 pm

LD, you have some decent points in there, but you're definitely overstating the equilibrium between Townsend and Cotter - there's a clear difference between the two. It would be worth taking the results from their RWC year alone and seeing where they stand - one close QF compared to one fairly clear failure to qualify from the group ( it wasn't just a 7 point loss - Scotland effectively 'lost' the Japan game by 15 points).

Also, be a bit more sensitive. Scottish fans must be gutted, and this is their thread.

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:38 pm

miaow wrote:Also, be a bit more sensitive. Scottish fans must be gutted, and this is their thread.

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

They want to sack their best coach in years. You are telling me to be more sensitive ?

OK, never mind, I will not put my opinion on this thread anymore.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:42 pm

LordDowlais wrote:

They want to sack their best coach in years. You are telling me to be more sensitive ?


I would love to see the rationale behind pushing Townsend as their best coach in years, even allowing for the paucity prior to Cotter. Townsend has failed to sho any consistency in selection or any discernible game plan. If you swapped him and hi steam for Gats and his, while Scotland may not have won a GS, Wales would have failed to get out of their WC group.

Good coaches take good players and turn them into a team. Poor coaches take good players and make them look like clueless amateurs.

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Post by BigGee on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:49 pm

Tom English take on it, seems pretty on the money as usual. Yes we have some decent players coming through, but can these coaches do anything with them?

Review after this years 6N I would imagine and that no doubt will be the message to Toonie from Dodson.


'A big argument for a clear-out'

Of all the World Cup groups that Scotland have been in since the beginning of the tournament in 1987, this turned out to be the hardest, rivalled only by the 2011 World Cup where they were pitched in with - and failed to emerge from - a pool with England and Argentina.

Ireland are a better side than Scotland. Japan are a better side than the pair of them. Scotland finished behind both and that's where they deserved to be. That's the reality. Japan have made the most enormous strides in recent years while Scotland have stalled or have gone backwards.

They contributed handsomely to what was a remarkable game in Yokohama, but there's no comfort in that. A few players were still in something approaching shock over an hour after the game had ended. Some had clearly been crying. One or two, it was said, were crying still. The easiest - and dumbest - thing to say about this team is that they don't care as much as other teams. They do. These guys bust every sinew to deliver, but they weren't good enough, their coaches weren't good enough, their mentality wasn't good enough.

In their two biggest games of this World Cup they were 28-7 down after 43 minutes against Japan and 24-3 down after 56 minutes against Ireland. This is a recurring theme and it's wearying. They were up against better sides, but in four quarters they managed to play well in just one of them. It's pretty dismal stuff.

Scotland can deliver wondrous rugby but only in bits and pieces and too often they deliver when their own errors leave them needing a miracle to repair the damage. Some of the wayward kicking - and the tactical thinking behind it - was dreadful against Japan in that calamitous first half. They deny that they're backsliding as a team but it's hard to argue that they aren't.



Japan v Scotland

Some Scotland players were visibly distraught after the Yokohama loss

In Townsend's first Six Nations they hit a height against England that they haven't hit since. In 2019, Scotland have played nine competitive games and have won three - Italy, Samoa and Russia. They haven't turned over a big dog in a championship game since that victory over England at Murrayfield in the spring of 2018.

The support for Townsend and his coaching staff is draining. There's no sense in jettisoning him, but after this latest failure he's got a massive Six Nations coming up with three of the games away from home - Dublin, Rome and Cardiff - and with a record on the road that makes you wince.

Would another coach - a Vern Cotter type pragmatist, or just plain old Vern Cotter - get more consistency from these players? They're not a bad bunch. When they found something in the second half in Yokohama they looked a very decent outfit. Jamie Ritchie was immense, Jonny Gray produced the kind of angry performance that you want to see him produce every game. Zander Fagerson came off the bench and brought an attitude that we don't see nearly enough of from him. Big Zander could be a colossus for Scotland, if only he had that rage every time he took the field.

In despair, there's hope. Magnus Bradbury, Blade Thomson, Ritchie and Hamish Watson, when fit, are fine players and represent a changing of the back-row guard. Scott Cummings has a real chance at lock. The crisis at loose-head prop now has bells and whistles attached, though. It's the key problem area and it's holding Scotland back.

Outside of loose-head there's enough there to make Scotland competitive. Nobody is expecting heroics, just competitive performances that don't disappear in a puff of smoke after 50 minutes or less. Townsend needs a big Six Nations. He'll keep faith with his coaches - there's a big argument for starting a clear-out and bringing in new thinking - but every one of them is on trial now.

Another failure and those full houses that Scottish Rugby loves to crow about might not be so full any more. Right now, as the party ends and everyone drifts home, everything feels empty.





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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:50 pm

Remind me who the defence coach is please?

My favourite most illuminating bit from the BBC review:

Four tries conceded amid Japan's blur of movement. Four tries conceded against Ireland at the beginning of the pool. Five tries conceded against England in their last championship match before coming here. Twelve tries conceded in the four Tests that went before. Fourteen conceded in the five competitive Tests before that. Even Mr Magoo could see a theme here.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/50035984

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Post by 123456789. on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 12:58 pm

Suppose we can start to think about what to say when Gatland only takes three Scots to South Africa.

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:05 pm

LondonTiger wrote:I would love to see the rationale behind pushing Townsend as their best coach in years, even allowing for the paucity prior to Cotter. Townsend has failed to sho any consistency in selection or any discernible game plan. If you swapped him and hi steam for Gats and his, while Scotland may not have won a GS, Wales would have failed to get out of their WC group.

Good coaches take good players and turn them into a team. Poor coaches take good players and make them look like clueless amateurs.

As you are replying to me, I will answer, Gregor Townsend's record is better than any other coach who has coached Scotland over the past 15 years, that is a fact.

Scotland do not have 15 good players, they have two or three, and the rest are not as good as the teams around them.

He is getting a bashing over the Japan result. Lets put things into perspective. This Japan side have been together for over two years, building up to this world cup, they have been left to go about their business, they knew this was their world cup, and they wanted to give the Japanese public a team to be proud of. They have been working to this moment since they won the bid to host the tournament. They beat Ireland, in my opinion, they would beat Wales England and France on some of the performances I have seen.

Gregor Townsend has won the calcutta cup after 11 years of trying. They have finished in their highest 6N place in about 15 years, they are no longer a bottom two side, I just cannot fathom what the Scottish fans want ? If Wales did not get out of Scotland's group, knowing what I know now, would I want Gatland gone ? No chance.

I think some perspective needs to be taken here. I do not think Vern Cotter would have done any better, he would have the same tools to work with. Hogg, Maitland, Watson aside, I cannot see any players who who would break into any of the top 5 teams in the rankings, Finn Russell if I am being generous. But even the names mentioned would not be guaranteed starters in my opinion, and lets not lose track of that, it's just my opinion. OK

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Post by miaow on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:06 pm

BigGee wrote:
miaow wrote:

Again, from the outside, that's what it feels like watching Scotland the lat 12-18 months. One thing goes wrong and they're powerless to stop momentum. Honestly look like less than the sum of their parts, and that alone is a sign something's fundamentally wrong.

That is a fair point, but who is responsible for that, the coach or the players on the pitch?

I am pretty sure Toonie does not tell them to go directly into panic mode as soon as the opposition scores a try!

Both but, ultimately, the coach. Clearly.

As others are mentioning about the forwars coaches leaving for Ulster/elsewhere, I don't know the specifics or too much of the history of Glasgow and Scotland in the last 6-7 years, but I do know that a sport's team is like any management set up, or any group, where it's about how everything interacts with everything else that determines results. The Head Coach is ultimately responsible - much more so than any individual player, and even 'the players' as a unit.

The fact Townsend does not tell his players to go in to panic mode does not mean he is not totally/largely responsible for that happening. The absence of a 'positive' - in this case, telling players to pull their jumpers over their heads and cluck - does not mean the presence of its opposite: that Townsend is building structures and a mentality and culture that makes panicking under pressure an unlikely response to conceding.

That is totally the coach's fault. The coach/DoR/whatever title you want to give them is responsible for it 'all'. I would suggest, as others have, that there are probably too many yes men in the set up - Gatland has one in Howley, but it's mitigated in the fact Wales have naturally gifted running rugby players, and have juussssttt about got away with barely playing with an attacking gameplan over the last 10 years. Shaun Edwards counteracts Howley and if Scotland are to have a man who, apparently, sees the job as the one he is entitled to, you cannot make weak coaches who don't challenge him. It's about how everything relates to everything else, and based on the regression of the forward pack (despite decent players) - and that includes odd selections like dropping Bradbury for this WC - and the regression in competitiveness from under Vern, then yeah, it's pretty easy to point the finger at Townsend. The whole system is not working in various ways, but if he literally cannot honestly identify what those are (based on what he says, I honestly don't think he can, the man seems blinkered) and, more importantly, put the solutions in to action, then the fact he is responsible means it's time to panic off the field as well. And by panic I mean change the system completely, which probably means sack him.

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Post by miaow on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:12 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
miaow wrote:Also, be a bit more sensitive. Scottish fans must be gutted, and this is their thread.

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

They want to sack their best coach in years. You are telling me to be more sensitive ?

OK, never mind, I will not put my opinion on this thread anymore.

Yes because they've just been knocked out in the groups after a pretty dreadful WC. It's not the worst thing in the world - clearly the typhoon puts things in perspective - but think about how you felt after the Fiji defeat. Don't really need you to keep hammering the point home. You are making your point, no one's stopping you make it, but 'SCOTLAND ARE RUBBISH AND YOU COULDN'T DO BETTER ANYWAWY' isn't the best argument to make the day after they've been knocked out. Can discuss the wider picture in the days and weeks ahead, but also, despite there being some truth in what you say about Scottish coaches in the last 15 years or so, clearly you're wrong about Towsend and Cotter being equals as Scotland were a horrible referee call away from a semi final 4 years ago under Cotter, and were 20-odd points and 15-points worse than Ireland and Japan respectively this time around. They were ultimately nowhere near the knockouts, let alone a SF. That's a big regression in 4 years. So, with that in mind, it's better to be a little less demanding that Scottish posters listen to your opinion. That's all. No harm in asking for a bit more respect and understanding is there? Nothng controversial in that? It's not all or nothing, surely?

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:29 pm

OK

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:29 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
EST wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
sensisball wrote:So Gatland turned Wales from laughing stock into a multiple grand slam winning team and you are asking what is the point in changing a clearly failed coach. Seriously?
We have many weaknesses, not all of which can be addressed by a new coach alone but someone with a more rounded approach to coaching other than Toonie who  wants joue, joue all the time. This would give us more of a chance of staying in games deep into the second half instead of being beaten by the time the oranges are consumed.

Gatland did not turn us in to anything, they signs were already there under Ruddock, but he walked, and we gave the job to the popular choice, who was out of date with modern rugby, until it took a failed WC campaign and a string of diabolical results before hand to change the coach. It is totally different, we had the players, Scotland unfortunately do not, bar the odd two or three.

The key point Lord, is that our performances were improving under Vern - he still had the odd shocker, but the trajectory was upwards.  Performances under Toonie, with the odd exception, have regressed.

I think we can agree, to disagree on this one. Very Happy  thumbsup
I think we can also agree that your posts seem to be needlessly antagonistic and fairly graceless given that your own national side is clearly on the rise at the moment (something which nobody grudges you but which if you're as old as me you would realise has not always been the case). My 5 year old has recently started to adopt the rationale that you can insult people as long as you preemptively seem to offer an apology first. We're training him out of it because it annoys people.
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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:30 pm

miaow wrote:SCOTLAND ARE RUBBISH AND YOU COULDN'T DO BETTER ANYWAWY

I haven't said that. Rolling Eyes

miaow wrote:Yes because they've just been knocked out in the groups after a pretty dreadful WC. It's not the worst thing in the world - clearly the typhoon puts things in perspective - but think about how you felt after the Fiji defeat.

There is a massive difference. Wales had the players, I would argue, that the players we had available in 2007 are better than what we have now. We were already on a downward trajectory before the world cup whilst Gareth Jenkins was in charge.

Scotland do not have the pool of players available to them that Wales did have in 2007 and what Wales have now.

miaow wrote:Can discuss the wider picture in the days and weeks ahead, but also, despite there being some truth in what you say about Scottish coaches in the last 15 years or so, clearly you're wrong about Towsend and Cotter being equals as Scotland were a horrible referee call away from a semi final 4 years ago under Cotter, and were 20-odd points and 15-points worse than Ireland and Japan respectively this time around. They were ultimately nowhere near the knockouts, let alone a SF.

Gregor Townsend's record is better than Vern Cotters, that is a fact nobody can deny. This is not about "Scotland are crap" I do not think that. I think Townsend is being given a tough ride by the supporters.

In the last world cup, Scotland did not have an Ireland side ranked number one in the world to deal with, or a host country on a crest of a wave with a whole nation behind them who have been building up to this moment since they won the right to host the wc, the same country who have just beaten high flying in the rankings Ireland to deal with.

I honestly believe France and Wales would have struggled to qualify from this group, even England may have. Would you want Gatland sacked if he failed to qualify from Scotlands group ?

I agree with the more level headed fans on here who are saying, give him the next 6N to prove himself. OK

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:32 pm

George Carlin wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
EST wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
sensisball wrote:So Gatland turned Wales from laughing stock into a multiple grand slam winning team and you are asking what is the point in changing a clearly failed coach. Seriously?
We have many weaknesses, not all of which can be addressed by a new coach alone but someone with a more rounded approach to coaching other than Toonie who  wants joue, joue all the time. This would give us more of a chance of staying in games deep into the second half instead of being beaten by the time the oranges are consumed.

Gatland did not turn us in to anything, they signs were already there under Ruddock, but he walked, and we gave the job to the popular choice, who was out of date with modern rugby, until it took a failed WC campaign and a string of diabolical results before hand to change the coach. It is totally different, we had the players, Scotland unfortunately do not, bar the odd two or three.

The key point Lord, is that our performances were improving under Vern - he still had the odd shocker, but the trajectory was upwards.  Performances under Toonie, with the odd exception, have regressed.

I think we can agree, to disagree on this one. Very Happy  thumbsup
I think we can also agree that your posts seem to be needlessly antagonistic and fairly graceless given that your own national side is clearly on the rise at the moment (something which nobody grudges you but which if you're as old as me you would realise has not always been the case). My 5 year old has recently started to adopt the rationale that you can insult people as long as you preemptively seem to offer an apology first. We're training him out of it because it annoys people.

Good old fashioned AntiMillennialisation counter-educational techniques!
Keep it up, George. We got a planet to save and we only got 12 years to do it!

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Post by BamBam on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:44 pm

George Carlin wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
EST wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
sensisball wrote:So Gatland turned Wales from laughing stock into a multiple grand slam winning team and you are asking what is the point in changing a clearly failed coach. Seriously?
We have many weaknesses, not all of which can be addressed by a new coach alone but someone with a more rounded approach to coaching other than Toonie who  wants joue, joue all the time. This would give us more of a chance of staying in games deep into the second half instead of being beaten by the time the oranges are consumed.

Gatland did not turn us in to anything, they signs were already there under Ruddock, but he walked, and we gave the job to the popular choice, who was out of date with modern rugby, until it took a failed WC campaign and a string of diabolical results before hand to change the coach. It is totally different, we had the players, Scotland unfortunately do not, bar the odd two or three.

The key point Lord, is that our performances were improving under Vern - he still had the odd shocker, but the trajectory was upwards.  Performances under Toonie, with the odd exception, have regressed.

I think we can agree, to disagree on this one. Very Happy  thumbsup
I think we can also agree that your posts seem to be needlessly antagonistic and fairly graceless given that your own national side is clearly on the rise at the moment (something which nobody grudges you but which if you're as old as me you would realise has not always been the case). My 5 year old has recently started to adopt the rationale that you can insult people as long as you preemptively seem to offer an apology first. We're training him out of it because it annoys people.

OK OK OK

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 1:47 pm

I have cleaned up this thread somewhat.
Please can we be respectful of how various fans might be feeling at the moment.
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Post by BigGee on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 2:11 pm

I am a Toonie fan, always have been as a player and as the coach of Glasgow, who just played some of the best rugby I have ever supported under him.

I am not going to be calling for his head, which probably puts me into the category of 'the more level headed' category of fan on this forum, but I am pragmatic enough to realise that plenty of other good coaches have lost their jobs for less than what he has done.

It is not the going out of the WC that bothers me, Japan are clearly a very good team and there is no shame in losing to them. It is just that there have been to many soft performances in general on his watch and that is what grates me, especially knowing that we do have better players these days.

Someone tweeted out the team that beat Japan a 100 odd nil some 15 years ago. It was awful, maybe 2 or 3 players max would have been in contention for the current team. We have a good enough team to be competitive in pretty much every match we play and yet we are not.

Toonie is definitely on notice now, I don't think anyone, least of all himself, is not aware of that. What may save him is the fact that the coaching merry go round, post WC, won't really get going for a few months yet and by that time it will be the 6N.

He will get another chance, largely because of that, but but who is to say that some discreet feelers about availability of coaches might not be taking place in the meantime.

I hope he does turn things around, but I would be lying if I was to say I was confident.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 2:13 pm

If he is to stay he needs a better forwards coach, a better defence coach and needs to stop making selections through a game of pin the tail on a donkey.

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Post by BigGee on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 2:25 pm

Danny Wilson was considered a decent appointment at the time and was a coach in demand, we pinched him from under the nose of Dai Young at Wasps. It does not seem to have worked well though, certainly compared to how it was going with McFarland.

Matt Taylor has been with Toonie all along, Glasgow then Scotland, they seem joined at the hip and again, he has been linked with other jobs, including England, so he must be rated.

Maybe it is just the combination and/or balance that is not working.

Hard to say really, but you won't see coaches queuing up for the job whilst they know Toonie is on notice, so I think we are likely stuck with the three of them for now.

Any changes coming, expect them next summer.

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Post by jimbopip on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 2:37 pm

WTF?

WTABSOLUTEFECC??

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, even those dullards who say, "Boris, 'es a legend."

We can disagree with each other without getting all TOWIE about it. see how down with the kids I am?.

GC, as our resident Attorney General you must be aware of the maxim, bad cases make bad laws. Which can be interpreted as; tempting as it may be for American citizens to amend their constitution to include "Oversized orange oompah loompahs with Teflon hair are banned from running for political office." this would be a bad law because the next spray tanned plastic haired extralong tie pointing at his genitals who runs for office might be the love child of Mother Theresa and Nelson Mandela.

Similarly, we are all hurting and perhaps should let some time pass before demanding Toonies wedding tackle in a katsu curry.

I know in the past I've referred to F Scott Fitzgerald's The Last Tycoon, but in terms of management advice there are few better guidelines than the scene where the Hollywood producer is quizzing the pilot who will shortly fly him across country. He asks the pilot how he would act if they were lowish on fuel and heading towards a storm, with the choice of two alternative routes. How would you make the choice? The answer was, "It doesn't matter which route you choose. What matters is once you have made it stick to it. And never let those around you think for even a second that you had any doubts."

The SRU either sack Toonie asap or stand by him long term.

If they are going to sack him they should have already identified the person they want to succeed him and have everything in place in order to successfully woo him.

If they are standing by Toonie then give him the next World Cup.

Choose one and stick with it. Don't give Toonie "the 6N and maybe we'll keep you". This would only encourage lots of dissension behind the scenes and people jockeying for jobs.

If it's not Toonie have his successor in place before Christmas. Make it clear he's here for Four years. Do not allow anyone ever to think you're having second thoughts.

Personally, I would stick with Toonie. But I've been married to the same woman for 31 years, moved into a village in rural Essex 25 years ago as a stop gap till we moved back to Glasgow and I still think Songs For Swinging Lover is a masterpiece. What do I know?

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Post by EST on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 2:50 pm

BigGee wrote:I am a Toonie fan, always have been as a player and as the coach of Glasgow, who just played some of the best rugby I have ever supported under him.

I am not going to be calling for his head, which probably puts me into the category of 'the more level headed' category of fan on this forum, but I am pragmatic enough to realise that plenty of other good coaches have lost their jobs for less than what he has done.

It is not the going out of the WC that bothers me, Japan are clearly a very good team and there is no shame in losing to them. It is just that there have been to many soft performances in general on his watch and that is what grates me, especially knowing that we do have better players these days.

Someone tweeted out the team that beat Japan a 100 odd nil some 15 years ago. It was awful, maybe 2 or 3 players max would have been in contention for the current team. We have a good enough team to be competitive in pretty much every match we play and yet we are not.

Toonie is definitely on notice now, I don't think anyone, least of all himself, is not aware of that. What may save him is the fact that the coaching merry go round, post WC, won't really get going for a few months yet and by that time it will be the 6N.

He will get another chance, largely because of that, but but who is to say that some discreet feelers about availability of coaches might not be taking place in the meantime.

I hope he does turn things around, but I would be lying if I was to say I was confident.

Key bit BigGee, so many of the same type of performances with the same fundamental flaws.......do you see anything in Toonies demeanor, or recent coaching history, to suggest that he is aware of the issues and how to fix them? I sense somebody with a pretty blinkered view of what is required at this level, who is not willing to adapt to reality. The question posed by a journo following the Ireland shellacking, to the effect of having to earn the right to go wide, was met with a pretty dismissive response - a good example of him having his head in the sand.

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Post by R!skysports on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 3:06 pm

(added this on the other thread, but thought this one had more people discussing)

We have now been a 'developing side' for 20 years and I am so bored with our inability to learn from our mistakes

We finally has a decent coach who was making real progress and threw him out for a one hit wonder who was not even a very good Glasgow coach. ( he was found out after the league win and has not been able to make any changes since)

We have gone RAPIDLY backwards since he came on and have an embarrassing away record.
A good half here and there papers over cracks of a man and a SRU completely at seas with the modern game

The only good thing to come out of this is I was coaching my Kids for their Rugby during most of the matches at the weekend so did not need to suffer - and the sad thing is,

this is the first time I have missed the Scottish matches in a world cup and have had no desire to watch the recordings and don't give a fudge about it.

I am a lost fan and unless something changes, don't know if I can be bothered to what this mess of Scottish nepotism ruining any potential in our game

PS #Townsend out

PS Yes I am angry :0)

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Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 3:33 pm

BigGee wrote:Danny Wilson was considered a decent appointment at the time and was a coach in demand, we pinched him from under the nose of Dai Young at Wasps. It does not seem to have worked well though, certainly compared to how it was going with McFarland.

Matt Taylor has been with Toonie all along, Glasgow then Scotland, they seem joined at the hip and again, he has been linked with other jobs, including England, so he must be rated.

Maybe it is just the combination and/or balance that is not working.

Hard to say really, but you won't see coaches queuing up for the job whilst they know Toonie is on notice, so I think we are likely stuck with the three of them for now.

Any changes coming, expect them next summer.

Matt Taylor defence coach for Queensland Reds when they won the Super Rugby title and Glasgow defence coach when they won the Pro14. He got those attacking minded sides secure enough to succeed, should be the ideal assistant for Scotland in the current set up.

I still think the forwards are either not up to the game plan and so revert to type or the wrong players are being selected.

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Post by mikey_dragon on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 3:42 pm

Scotland could do with some new personnel, in the playing and coaching team. It's a good idea to start afresh with a new coaching team, but not a bad idea to keep Toonie on. Something isn't right however. These guys I see turning out for Glasgow and Edinburgh look better than this.

Who are the biggest and nastiest forwards in Scotland? Behind Toonie, do you rate or not rate any of the coaches, Wilson, etc?

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Post by alive555 on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 3:49 pm

Just checked Cotter record and although its not that much better than toonies, its much better in 2 respects

1. of 36 games only 3 times did Scotland lose by more than 15 points. Most less than a score
2. His record rapidly improved after his first year

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Post by EST on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 4:10 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:
BigGee wrote:Danny Wilson was considered a decent appointment at the time and was a coach in demand, we pinched him from under the nose of Dai Young at Wasps. It does not seem to have worked well though, certainly compared to how it was going with McFarland.

Matt Taylor has been with Toonie all along, Glasgow then Scotland, they seem joined at the hip and again, he has been linked with other jobs, including England, so he must be rated.

Maybe it is just the combination and/or balance that is not working.

Hard to say really, but you won't see coaches queuing up for the job whilst they know Toonie is on notice, so I think we are likely stuck with the three of them for now.

Any changes coming, expect them next summer.

Matt Taylor defence coach for Queensland Reds when they won the Super Rugby title and Glasgow defence coach when they won the Pro14. He got those attacking minded sides secure enough to succeed, should be the ideal assistant for Scotland in the current set up.

I still think the forwards are either not up to the game plan and so revert to type or the wrong players are being selected.

Him and Toonie have been together a long time, Sam - I think they both played together at the Borders - he brought him over from the Reds at the start of his Glasgow tenure. If he is to stay on, I think he probably needs to look very hard at appointing a new defence coach.

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Post by bsando on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 4:18 pm

EST wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
BigGee wrote:Danny Wilson was considered a decent appointment at the time and was a coach in demand, we pinched him from under the nose of Dai Young at Wasps. It does not seem to have worked well though, certainly compared to how it was going with McFarland.

Matt Taylor has been with Toonie all along, Glasgow then Scotland, they seem joined at the hip and again, he has been linked with other jobs, including England, so he must be rated.

Maybe it is just the combination and/or balance that is not working.

Hard to say really, but you won't see coaches queuing up for the job whilst they know Toonie is on notice, so I think we are likely stuck with the three of them for now.

Any changes coming, expect them next summer.

Matt Taylor defence coach for Queensland Reds when they won the Super Rugby title and Glasgow defence coach when they won the Pro14. He got those attacking minded sides secure enough to succeed, should be the ideal assistant for Scotland in the current set up.

I still think the forwards are either not up to the game plan and so revert to type or the wrong players are being selected.

Him and Toonie have been together a long time, Sam - I think they both played together at the Borders - he brought him over from the Reds at the start of his Glasgow tenure.  If he is to stay on, I think he probably needs to look very hard at appointing a new defence coach.
I really rate Matt Taylor as a coach but it may well be time for a change. It’s a shame as I’d love for him to find a solution to Scotland’s defensive woes but we keep leaking too many scores. I think we lack the same aggression that other teams have in their rush defence. Yesterday Graham was standing off the Japanese player when he could have moved up to pressure him. Small grubber through and Japanese try. The Scottish defence does tend to spread across and trail backwards which I personally think invites teams to have a go.

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Post by sensisball on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 4:26 pm

One problem, amongst many, is that Toonie is loyal to his small band of compadres. Our defence has been nothing short of shocking over the last 18 months or so, yet there appears to be no threat to Taylor, just the same old bilge about needing to be more focused in defence, we are working hard on our defence etc. etc. How many games have we conceded a try in the first 10 minutes this season?
But who cares? We can score more tries than you can, oh hang on, no we can't.

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Post by NeilyBroon on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 5:02 pm

I just think it's time to give up on Toonie. Get the feelers out now rather than after another miserable 6Ns. They can't exactly approach other coaches if Toonies place is still there. We didn't get rid of robinson and we regretted it and still ended up with a flaky interim. Likelihood is that'll happen even if we stick with Toonie to find out he's still tactically incompetent then have to look anyway. As Tom English wrote, it's there for everyone to see. The SRU have made some poor coach decisions over the years for club and national teams but i think dropping BVC for Toonie was on the same level as hiring Matt Williams or Michael Bradley. Totally unnecessary and ultimately we're paying the price now. Things were never perfect but they were going in the right direction under bvc. We have a chance to put ourselves back on track, Toonie can grab his coat as I'm sorry but he's had his chance and the evidence im our performances, not just results, shows a massive decline. We need a fresh pair of experienced eyes who know how to take teams to the next level.

Poor tactics, poor team choices, poor coaching. I refuse to watch scotland get horsed again next year.
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Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 5:53 pm

EST wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
BigGee wrote:Danny Wilson was considered a decent appointment at the time and was a coach in demand, we pinched him from under the nose of Dai Young at Wasps. It does not seem to have worked well though, certainly compared to how it was going with McFarland.

Matt Taylor has been with Toonie all along, Glasgow then Scotland, they seem joined at the hip and again, he has been linked with other jobs, including England, so he must be rated.

Maybe it is just the combination and/or balance that is not working.

Hard to say really, but you won't see coaches queuing up for the job whilst they know Toonie is on notice, so I think we are likely stuck with the three of them for now.

Any changes coming, expect them next summer.

Matt Taylor defence coach for Queensland Reds when they won the Super Rugby title and Glasgow defence coach when they won the Pro14. He got those attacking minded sides secure enough to succeed, should be the ideal assistant for Scotland in the current set up.

I still think the forwards are either not up to the game plan and so revert to type or the wrong players are being selected.

Him and Toonie have been together a long time, Sam - I think they both played together at the Borders - he brought him over from the Reds at the start of his Glasgow tenure.  If he is to stay on, I think he probably needs to look very hard at appointing a new defence coach.

True, Eddie Jones has tended to rotate round his coaches to keep things fresh and that has worked pretty well. Whether it's worth the SRU finding a position to move Taylor sidewards to avoid losing him. Send him to Glasgow or Edinburgh with a slightly bigger remit to see if he can develop further before coming back at a later date.

I also think selection has to be questioned. I watched (and enjoyed) the game on Sunday but I can't tell you who partnered Gray in the second row nor who was the third member of the backrow with Bradbury and Ritchie. Need more bite in that pack. Nowhere enough aggression when they needed to change the game. A backrow combining both Ritchie and Watson should be a must for the 6N.

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Post by 123456789. on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 6:30 pm

I'm not sure tinkering around the edges will work. If the SRU judge Taylor on the defensive record this season, it's not good news. By my reckoning we've conceded 27 tries in 8 Tier One games, 31 if you include Japan. That's 3.4 tries a game. He's been in post since 2012. I think it's time to look at alternatives there also.

Above it was suggested that you cannot sound at alternatives while Townsend is in post. I think it's perfect possible to come up with a shortlist of five coaches with proven track records and say "Can you come to us by the Six Nations?". If they say yes then we are in business. It might be slightly amoral however we're dealing with someone who leveraged himself into someone else's job.

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Post by blindsided on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 7:30 pm

Alright all. Long time without posting, thought I'd try getting back into it!

First things first, incredible game on Sunday. Plenty of justified criticism for our first half tactics with regards kicking the ball away, but it should be said Japan's ball retention was fantastic. We were hitting them with hard tackles and our intensity in defence was great... Japan's attack was just better, and their ball retention (aided by our aimless kicking) tired us out and I think directly contributed to the 3rd, killer, try before half time. We played very well in the 2nd half, but had left ourselves with too much to do by then.

The problem though isn't the Japan game - a great match that we closely lost. It's the Ireland WC game. The France warm-up game. The France 6N game earlier this year. The Wales 6N game last year. I think the majority of us don't mind losing close games where we give it a real crack, but that is a lot of times where we have just not turned up. And, considering in terms of talent this is definitely the best group of Scottish players in the past 20 years, that is not good enough. Whilst Townsend can't control every single thing that happens on the pitch, he is responsible for our tactics and in a lot of the above games those tactics have been crap. I honestly don't know if he is still the right person to take us forward, but I agree with Jimbo - either move now to get a new man in, or back him fully going forward. If we do change though, the grass isn't always greener - you'd be hard pushed to find a coach with better credentials than Rennie, and there's definitely not 100% backing for him at Glasgow!

Just one thing that's annoying me a little, is the criticism I'm seeing here and elsewhere with regards to Townsend's time at Glasgow. They were a great team to watch who built year on year before winning a title, and he remains the only coach who has led a Scottish team to any form of title in the past 20 years. He deserves respect for that and to say that the success of that team was only down to the groundwork of Lineen and the (admittedly outrageous!) skills of Naka is unfair.

Anyway at least we get our "stars" back into the Pro14 teams earlier than expected...

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Post by BigGee on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 7:35 pm

Realistically, we are not going to get a new coach in by the 6N.

It is only 3 months away and the WC is going on for another 3 weeks in any case. Pretty much any coach you might want to consider is already in post and won't be able to bail out at that sort of notice.

I don't think we need to rush into a new coach in any case. If it comes to that, then better to make a more informed choice and get it right than take whatever is on offer at short notice.

Coaches with international pedigree will begin to show their hands over the next few months. There are some big positions to fill, NZ and Australia and not so far into the future, England will be at the top of the list and the other posts, of which Scotland might be one of, will then take whatever is left available.

Who might it be?

BVC - depends whether he really still wants to do a top coaching job or whether he feels it is time to head back to the farm in NZ.

Scott Robinson - He might be a good call if NZ go along established lines and promote the assistant to the top job. They also like their coaches to have a bit of northern hemisphere experience these days. He is young enough to wait for the NZ job to come up again next time around.

Dave Rennie - can't discount him. The demands of international coaching might suit his family work balance a bit better and allow him to spend a bit more time at home in NZ. Rumours are that Scott Johnson has him lined up for the Australia job though. He will certainly have had some discussions about his future as this does seem likely to be his last season with Glasgow. I don't agree that he has not done well with Glasgow, short of winning the Pro14 last May, what more could he have done. Leinster and Saracens are what they are.

Richard Cockerill - Not my choice but worthy of consideration. He brought Edinburgh out of basket case status and reached Euro knock outs and will undoubtedly bring work rate and ethos to the party. Seems a bit tactically naive to be an international coach though as so far has struggled to see past the old Leicester model of forward dominance being the road to heaven. Scotland are never going to be a side who will dominate as a pack.

Eddie Jones - might as well deal with the elephant in the room! He will be available and is known to like a challenge. Scotland will certainly be a challenge!

Warren Gatland - seems happy to be going back to NZ and will then be taking a year out to coach the Lions again. Long term he surely fancies the NZ job and you can't imagine Scotland will float his boat.

Joe Schimdt - says he is staying in Europe now and not clear what his plans might be. He is very identified with Ireland though and more likely to see him taking over one of the provinces than another international job.

Stuart Lancaster - He does have some Scottish roots, his son played for our U18s recently. He has quietly gone about rehabilitating himself as a coach at Leinster and is felt by many to be the technical genius behind the success. Does he fancy stepping into the firing line again after the mauling he got last time though.


There will be others as well, but hard to see them or any others being in place by the beginning of February.

If Toonie wants to save his job, he is going to have to produce a very special 6N this year!

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Post by 123456789. on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 7:46 pm

I don’t like Eddie Jones. If England mess up on Saturday and he walks I’d take him in an instant. Apparently the Japanese were a bit soft when he came in and he managed to sort that out sharpish. If we could get Eddie Jones in as head coach, Sean Edwards as defence, Cockerill for the forwards and stick Toonie with the backs then we’d be in a good place. Pretty sure they’d all be keen too. Hansen might do some consulting.

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Post by jimbopip on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 8:39 pm

Numbers, you missed out the most obvious specialist coaching role. warning
Apparently Richie McCaw has developed a debilitating fear of falling out of helicopters and now only wants to work in cities where he can travel to rugby matches by low level methods of travel, such as trams or subways. He's also looking to share his breakdown expertise. At least that's what I understood him to mean when he said, "Mabwsa Ritchie too. Right mate." or was that "Mabawsa Ritchie. Too right, mate."

Blindside, you really should post more often. Hug

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 9:17 pm

123456789. wrote:I don’t like Eddie Jones. If England mess up on Saturday and he walks I’d take him in an instant. Apparently the Japanese were a bit soft when he came in and he managed to sort that out sharpish. If we could get Eddie Jones in as head coach, Sean Edwards as defence, Cockerill for the forwards and stick Toonie with the backs then we’d be in a good place. Pretty sure they’d all be keen too. Hansen might do some consulting.

A lorrah lorrah wages! Shocked

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Post by NeilyBroon on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 9:21 pm

Don't worry I'm sure we'll find someone to sue to pay them!
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Post by SecretFly on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 9:24 pm

laughing

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Post by Highland Shaun on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 10:16 pm

@BigGee,out of the list you posted, I would only consider Scott Robertson and, I will also add a name to the list, Pat Lam.

In no way will we get Schmidt, Gatland or Eddie Jones. Richard Cockerill and Dave Rennie would probably need to win trophies with their clubs first so, maybe in 5 years they will be ready.

Stuart Lancaster would not leave his current job but I would not say no to him, even though he is an Ex England coach.

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Post by Heuer27 on Mon 14 Oct 2019, 10:22 pm

Pretty sure Stuart Lancaster Was a Scotland B capped player.( checked it was students, u19 and u21 caps) So technically he jumped the dyke to coach England. He wouldn’t be the right fit for us though unless he had someone like Cockers as his assistant. From memory England under him were a bit soft and we’ve got that in spades already

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Post by George Carlin on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 12:21 am

Highland Shaun wrote:@BigGee,out of the list you posted, I would only consider Scott Robertson and, I will also add a name to the list, Pat Lam.

In no way will we get Schmidt, Gatland or Eddie Jones. Richard Cockerill and Dave Rennie would probably need to win trophies with their clubs first so, maybe in 5 years they will be ready.

Stuart Lancaster would not leave his current job but I would not say no to him, even though he is an Ex England coach.
I would also add Sean Edwards to that list. Yes, I said it.
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Post by Taylorman on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 12:58 am

If Scott Robertson opts he'll be disowned, cannot see that happening at all...
Pat Lam is an interesting one. Another of a long line of Blues failures but as a rule the issues facing the Blues are far wider than coach, most of them being to do with exactly what he did...he left...well, pushed in his case...

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Post by CaptainHaddock on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 2:29 am

TBH if we could secure the services of Scott Robertson we'd be absolute mugs not to. The transformation he has wrought at the 'saders and the way he has them playing rugby is fantastic. he's tactically switched on, he knows how to get a team winning.

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Post by RDW on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 2:37 am

Pat Lam is hugely respected and know the Scotland team well from his time in the Pro 14. A foreign coach like Robertson would be coming in completely blind - can't work out if that is a good thing or not!

Ideally we would get a coach proven at international level but they don't come cheap!

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Post by 123456789. on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 2:56 am

I wouldn’t mind somebody coming in blind from abroad. We could do with someone without preconceptions. I don’t think our starting XV has changed hugely in the last 3-4 years. We could do with someone coming in starting from scratch.
Scott Robertson would be amazing. The only issue I’d have is whether he’d fit seamlessly into Northern Hemisphere rugby. Super Rugby defences are a bit more liberal than ours tend to be. Although if it takes him two years of loose defence and mixed results to get going it’ll be very similar to Toonie staying anyway. As for it affecting his shot at the New Zealand job, both Hansen and Henry did a period in the North in International rugby.

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Post by CaptainHaddock on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 3:26 am

Looking at the points for and against for the 'saders last season it was 497 for and 257 against which gave them the joint lowest number of points conceded and a points difference of +240 which was 131 points better than the next best team. Considering that they played each of the other NZ franchises home and away it doesn't look like their defence is that bad. On average they are conceding 15 points a game over the season which isn't too bad. The more i think about the more I'd like him as an answer. His teams are ruthlessly efficient and tactically aware.

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Scotland post mortem - Page 3 Empty Re: Scotland post mortem

Post by NeilyBroon on Tue 15 Oct 2019, 7:00 am

Interesting article from the bbc here with price saying there's no need to change their style:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/50041892
I think the problem is there's a fine balance between letting players fling it about and actually instilling some structure. Basically price has described our problem but instead called it our style. We're not NZ. We don't have 15 immensely skilled players on the pitch at any given time. Even then the Kiwis are very well drilled in the basics.

Seeing as the general consensus is Toonie will stay for the 6Ns, I'd like to maybe see a consultant come in. When Richie came in a couple of years ago, the difference to our rucking and aggression was palpable, it'd be good to get someone of a similar calibre (not dean ryan). We also need to be running passing drills and phase rugby. Not just miracle moves that pay off once a game at best. That's up to Toonie to change his attitude to attack and actually get some of the boys in line and say "you're all part of a team, use your team mates and help them and we'll get opportunities to score, don't kick it unless we're stuck in our half" not just "pass it to the leaders, they know what to do"

As for future potential coaches, we could do worse than Pat Lam. It may be worth scouring the rest of the G premiership too. If mark mccall fancies an international job I'd be straight on the phone to him.
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