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Nick Easter : France won't stop England Grand Slam

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Post by GloriousEmpire Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:22 am

As far as confidence goes, Nick Easter has it.

There will be no Lions hang over for England he predicts, who will defy history by taking the six nations. France are in turmoil and in decline so he says today.

Bold prediction, writing off the French. Is he speaking the truth? Or smarting from England's 2011 exit at the hands of the same foes?

http://nzh.tw/11187689

"That is not going to happen, the state [French] rugby is in. With the players they have got...what was it last year, two wins?"

He goes on to predict not just an England win but an England grand slam.

"That game at Twickenham is potentially the decider. I think it's England's time - it's been a long time since they won a slam,"

He clearly believes that only France are capable of stopping England however unlikely - interesting stuff.


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Post by Scratch Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:24 am

GloriousEmpire wrote:As far as confidence goes, Nick Easter has it.

There will be no Lions hang over for England he predicts, who will defy history by taking the six nations. France are in turmoil and in decline so he says today.

Bold prediction, writing off the French. Is he speaking the truth? Or smarting from England's 2011 exit at the hands of the same foes?

http://nzh.tw/11187689

 Laugh You're incorrigible

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Post by Biltong Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:25 am

I find it very difficult these days to place the French in any category.

They are even more inconsistent than ever before. They rock up for games when form least suggests they will.

Take the RWC final in 2011, then again in November last year.
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Post by GloriousEmpire Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:27 am

Yep. It's the exception that proves not every cliche is necessarily untrue.

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Post by Scratch Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:41 am

But France have always been mercurial, this is nothing new.

As for Easter's assessment, it's pretty ignorant….he may be right that France after a dreadful year and a spoon for the first time, cannot stop England in Paris but I think that if England are foolish enough to approach this campaign withe their usual Grand Slam hubris they will come unstuck yet again.

What makes me laugh is that every year the 6 Nations is a tabula rasa for England, they talk it up and refer to their strength in depth and pack etc, consistency in coming 2nd or 3rd in the last 10 years while ignoring their 11 year record of failing to win it and conveniently ignoring the facts, the stats and the record of other sides. Especially the defending Champions.

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Post by sad_gimp Fri 17 Jan 2014, 4:24 am

France, England, Ireland, Wales all have respective supporters claiming 'this is their slam year'. Scotland and Italy a little more pragmatic.

It's just the tedious predictable WUMs that try and make anything of it.

Is anyone suggest that none of those top 4 sides is capable of a slam....we've seem tremendous performances from all of them recently.

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Post by majesticimperialman Fri 17 Jan 2014, 6:08 am

England will not take France lightly, they will not go in to any game thinking it is a given that they will win. France, England, Wales, Ireland will not think that they just have too turn up and the slam is on.

I think it is too close to call this year. Hope England win the 6ns, But i do think Ireland might have something too say about that.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 17 Jan 2014, 8:37 am

Not really sure you read the article GE as it's pretty clear Easter thinks it's out of England and Wales; with him favouring England.

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Post by Geordie Fri 17 Jan 2014, 8:59 am

Not really sure you read the article GE as it's pretty clear Easter thinks it's out of England and Wales; with him favouring England.

Read and discuss an article properly? Where would the wumming be in that 7 1/2?

Much more fun to put an anti English slant to it...

OOhh is it time to complain?

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Post by Nachos Jones Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:01 am

GE, you fit the mould of a British journalist perfectly. Your ability to pick and choose quotes and twist them in a negative manner is befitting of a top journalist Very Happy

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:12 am

Nick Easter didn't say that, but being Nick Easter nobody would be surprised if he did.

What I want to know is if Billy V and Morgan and maybe Ewers all get injured again, will Lancaster bring Easter (47 caps, plays with the number 7 and captain and has played for England with Wood at 6, in arguably the best form of his life and improving) in or shunt Wood to 8 again >Sad
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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:18 am

You mean GE isn't a journalist?! I've been assuming he was Chris Rattue this whole time!
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Post by Geordie Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:43 am

ChequeredJersey wrote:Nick Easter didn't say that, but being Nick Easter nobody would be surprised if he did.

What I want to know is if Billy V and Morgan and maybe Ewers all get injured again, will Lancaster bring Easter (47 caps, plays with the number 7 and captain and has played for England with Wood at 6, in arguably the best form of his life and improving) in or shunt Wood to 8 again >Sad

CJ

I argued this before regarding Johnny Wilkinson and a few other...and Paul Scholes in football.

Are they in this rich form and health beacuse they arent playing international level. The strains are high there...take that out and Easter is just enjoying his life and rugby with Quins...

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:47 am

Possibly the lack of tiring rugby is a factor, but Easter vocally and emphatically still wants to play for England. I certainly wouldn't bring him in as a part of the EPS long term (even though he could teach Morgan and Billy a lot) because I think we have great young options there and youth is the right approach at this point. But for a one (well, 2 inc italy) off game where in retrospect the lack of a number 8 was one of the biggest factors in our defeat, he was the perfect option
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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:53 am

With Dickinson and Ewers now expressing his desire to play for England it would take a horrendous list of injuries or misfortune for Easter to be considered. I'd agree that any 8 against Wales would have helped out.

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:55 am

Dickinson looks like the next Easter to be fair, very similar career pathway so far
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Post by GloriousEmpire Fri 17 Jan 2014, 9:56 am

Scratch wrote:But France have always been mercurial, this is nothing new.

As for Easter's assessment, it's pretty ignorant….he may be right that France after a dreadful year and a spoon for the first time, cannot stop England in Paris but I think that if England are foolish enough to approach this campaign withe their usual Grand Slam hubris they will come unstuck yet again.

What makes me laugh is that every year the 6 Nations is a tabula rasa for England, they talk it up and refer to their strength in depth and pack etc, consistency in coming 2nd or 3rd in the last 10 years while ignoring their 11 year record of failing to win it and conveniently ignoring the facts, the stats and the record of other sides. Especially the defending Champions.

Dude! Nice work!

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:00 am

Can't see much wrong with what Easter actually said.

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:03 am

Scratch wrote:But France have always been mercurial, this is nothing new.

As for Easter's assessment, it's pretty ignorant….he may be right that France after a dreadful year and a spoon for the first time, cannot stop England in Paris but I think that if England are foolish enough to approach this campaign withe their usual Grand Slam hubris they will come unstuck yet again.

What makes me laugh is that every year the 6 Nations is a tabula rasa for England, they talk it up and refer to their strength in depth and pack etc, consistency in coming 2nd or 3rd in the last 10 years while ignoring their 11 year record of failing to win it and conveniently ignoring the facts, the stats and the record of other sides. Especially the defending Champions.

Some fair points, but you know we last won it in 2011, right? That's not 10 years ago unless I've overslept a LOT, in which case I probably have some life-fixing to do
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Post by GloriousEmpire Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:05 am

Have to agree with you Cyril. The article's headline was a tad sensationalist. But this is the reaction the journalist wants though right? the quickly rising feeling of outrage that makes the reader lead into the article to find just what the brigand said...then read all the way to the bottom naively scanning for the enraging quote, only to find you've read their throw away article all the way through and ... where was that outrageous opinion?

I guess if journos just wrote headlines "Rugby Player Respects Opposition" or "Veteran England Star Has Reasonable Opinion" not many folks would read their rag.

Easter's dig at Frances two wins last year was a bit controversial though.

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:08 am

I didn't realise France had only won two games last year. They're worse than I thought.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:08 am

So did you just not understand the article GE when you wrote 'He clearly believes that only France are capable of stopping England however unlikely - interesting stuff.' or are you attributing that the author as well?

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Post by GloriousEmpire Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:12 am

"Easter believes that England can win in Paris on the opening weekend and a victory would set them up for what he sees as the pivotal fixture against Wales at Twickenham on March 9, the penultimate round of games."

"That game at Twickenham is potentially the decider. I think it's England's time - it's been a long time since they won a slam"

Ergo - Easter believes if England overcome France in Paris, they will win the slam. Hard to argue with? did you interpret it differently?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:18 am

"That game at Twickenham is potentially the decider. I think it's England's time - it's been a long time since they won a slam," Easter said. "Ireland are developing nicely and have a high-quality coach, but I don't think they are in as good a position as England and Wales."

Read the full quotes. I'm not arguing that he thinks that England will get the slam and he's entitled to that opinion but he actually writes off frances chances and places more emphasis on Wales. You really need to rejig your own article around.

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:22 am

7.5 is right.

Usual Gloria mischief.

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Post by rodders Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:31 am

Scratch wrote:But France have always been mercurial, this is nothing new.

No they used to be mercurial now they predictably average.

They don't travel well, their half backs are pants and despite a strong scrum and some exciting outside backs they are very beatable by any side who can bully them up front, like England.

Easter is right, England will win the slam - the only team who may beat them is Scotland at Murrayfield.

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Post by BamBam Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:33 am

Bloomin eck guys, please don't build us up so we take another almighty fall like we did at the hands of the Irish a few years ago and Wales last year

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:33 am

Harsh, rodders, I'd still say Parra is a top class 9 it they'd pick him
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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:33 am

I must say England are a very decent team but a little over rated. With Lancaster at the helm you have a very organised and structured team that grinds teams down through solid breakdown work and dominance, very organised set piece and a few battering rams in the backs.

This England team is very one dimensional though and while they are certainly one of the favorites I reckon France and Wales are just as likely to win the championship with Ireland not too far behind. I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

One thing this England team cannot do is adapt and think on their feet and I reckon Ireland will beat them by opening up the game as much as possible and take them right out of their comfort zone.


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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:35 am

No idea how we might do against Ireland and Wales at home is a tough match, hoping the key players play with their club form in that one. I really don't fear the Stade de France anymore though. We have won their with some average teams playing average rugby
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Post by Barney McGrew did it Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:40 am

"Dangerous" (or even "mercurial") France is currently as fatuous as "dark-horse" Scotland, or "plucky" Wales, or “choker” ABs.

France’s reputation precedes and flatters them (much the same as Australia’s).

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:42 am

GunsGerms wrote:I must say England are a very decent team but a little over rated. With Lancaster at the helm you have a very organised and structured team that grinds teams down through solid breakdown work and dominance, very organised set piece and a few battering rams in the backs.

This England team is very one dimensional though and while they are certainly one of the favorites I reckon France and Wales are just as likely to win the championship with Ireland not too far behind. I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

One thing this England team cannot do is adapt and think on their feet and I reckon Ireland will beat them by opening up the game as much as possible and take them right out of their comfort zone.
I see Ireland at Scotland's level at the moment. Not a danger as yet. Schmidt may get them firing but that Australia game showed how much work he has to do.

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Post by beshocked Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:42 am

GunsGerms how are England overrated? 4th in the world and deservedly so. The only side to beat one of the tri nations in the AIs. 2nd in the last two 6 nations with 8 out of 10 wins.

Plus we actually beat NZ in 2012.

Saying that the highest ranked side in the 6 nations with two of their main rivals at home - Wales and Ireland are favourites is hardly arrogance.

Ireland performed well against NZ but got mercilessly spanked by the Aussies that was despite some of the Aussie squad getting peed up in the run up to the match.

If England beat France in the first match they'll be favourites for the GS.

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Post by quinsforever Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:43 am

GunsGerms wrote:I must say England are a very decent team but a little over rated. With Lancaster at the helm you have a very organised and structured team that grinds teams down through solid breakdown work and dominance, very organised set piece and a few battering rams in the backs.

This England team is very one dimensional though and while they are certainly one of the favorites I reckon France and Wales are just as likely to win the championship with Ireland not too far behind. I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

One thing this England team cannot do is adapt and think on their feet and I reckon Ireland will beat them by opening up the game as much as possible and take them right out of their comfort zone.
this, unfortunately, has been true of most england teams in my experience. only exception being the 2007 RWC side who ditched the tactics of the coaches (after the SA whipping) and took responsibility themselves.

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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:44 am

Cyril wrote:
GunsGerms wrote:I must say England are a very decent team but a little over rated. With Lancaster at the helm you have a very organised and structured team that grinds teams down through solid breakdown work and dominance, very organised set piece and a few battering rams in the backs.

This England team is very one dimensional though and while they are certainly one of the favorites I reckon France and Wales are just as likely to win the championship with Ireland not too far behind. I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

One thing this England team cannot do is adapt and think on their feet and I reckon Ireland will beat them by opening up the game as much as possible and take them right out of their comfort zone.
I see Ireland at Scotland's level at the moment. Not a danger as yet. Schmidt may get them firing but that Australia game showed how much work he has to do.


... What about that All blacks game though?
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Post by Scrumpy Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:45 am

Shock horror 'former England player backs his team!'

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:48 am

ChequeredJersey wrote:
Cyril wrote:
GunsGerms wrote:I must say England are a very decent team but a little over rated. With Lancaster at the helm you have a very organised and structured team that grinds teams down through solid breakdown work and dominance, very organised set piece and a few battering rams in the backs.

This England team is very one dimensional though and while they are certainly one of the favorites I reckon France and Wales are just as likely to win the championship with Ireland not too far behind. I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

One thing this England team cannot do is adapt and think on their feet and I reckon Ireland will beat them by opening up the game as much as possible and take them right out of their comfort zone.
I see Ireland at Scotland's level at the moment. Not a danger as yet. Schmidt may get them firing but that Australia game showed how much work he has to do.


... What about that All blacks game though?
France pushed NZ close too and we all know what a mess they are in. Ireland have performed poorly for a fair while, especially in the last 6 Nations. I don't read too much into one-off games like the NZ one (where they still managed to lose). I'd say they're currently on a par with Scotland and playing for 4th/5th place.

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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:56 am

Last time Ireland played England it was a one score game. It was very close and Ireland have improved since then. Sometimes I wonder where England confidence comes from.

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Post by rodders Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:58 am

GunsGerms wrote: I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

Whoa big talk gunser! Schmidt may have they tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster but Lancaster has the forward pack to steamroller Joe's tactics! In the last two games we've been smashed in the pack and smashed at the breakdown, it's very difficult to win without this platform - I'm not throwing in the towel but I see this as our toughest game by far.
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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:58 am

beshocked wrote:GunsGerms how are England overrated? 4th in the world and deservedly so. The only side to beat one of the tri nations in the AIs. 2nd in the last two 6 nations with 8 out of 10 wins.

Plus we actually beat NZ in 2012.

Saying that the highest ranked side in the 6 nations with two of their main rivals at home - Wales and Ireland are favourites is hardly arrogance.

Ireland performed well against NZ but got mercilessly spanked by the Aussies that was despite some of the Aussie squad getting peed up in the run up to the match.

If England beat France in the first match they'll be favourites for the GS.

I havent accused anyone of being arrogant. I dont think any side will get a grandslam. I have given my reasons why I think England are over rated.

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Post by Cyril Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:00 am

Where is the Irish confidence coming from, Guns? I think perhaps you are the one overrating your side.

Have they Ireland improved? Played well against NZ (and lost again) but looked just as woeful when Australia smashed them as in some games in the last 6 Nations.

England were in control away in Ireland last time. I think it'll be a wider margin at HQ.

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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:01 am

rodders wrote:
GunsGerms wrote: I actually think that Ireland will beat England in Twickenham this year. Bold prediction I know but I just feel this England team has no plan B whereas Joe Schmidt has the tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster and keep England guessing.

Whoa big talk gunser! Schmidt may have they tactical nous to outsmart Lancaster but Lancaster has the forward pack to steamroller Joe's tactics! In the last two games we've been smashed in the pack and smashed at the breakdown, it's very difficult to win without this platform - I'm not throwing in the towel but I see this as our toughest game by far.  

Leinster won two heineken cups without ever really being dominant at the breakdown. I know this is international rugby but its not the be all and end all. That said while SOB is a massive loss, POC, Best, Heaslip and Healy are all very good at the breakdown and I dont see why if we can dominate NZ at the breakdown why we cant do the same v England.

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Post by rodders Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:03 am

Cyril wrote:Ireland have performed poorly for a fair while, especially in the last 6 Nations. I don't read too much into one-off games like the NZ one (where they still managed to lose). I'd say they're currently on a par with Scotland and playing for 4th/5th place.

I think that's a fair comment based on our ranking and recent results. I think we are potentially better but potential doesn't pay the bills - if we win our home games and one on the road we'll have done exceptionally well and would finish in the top 3, I think this is achievable.
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Post by Nachos Jones Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:04 am

GunsGerms wrote:

Leinster won two heineken cups without ever really being dominant at the breakdown. I know this is international rugby but its not the be all and end all. That said while SOB is a massive loss, POC, Best, Heaslip and Healy are all very good at the breakdown and I dont see why if we can dominate NZ at the breakdown why we cant do the same v England.

Probably because Ireland is so inconsistent. Its early in Schmidt's rein, granted, but until Ireland show any form of consistency then I wont be confident of beating teams like England.

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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:05 am

Cyril wrote:Where is the Irish confidence coming from, Guns? I think perhaps you are the one overrating your side.

Have they Ireland improved? Played well against NZ (and lost again) but looked just as woeful when Australia smashed them as in some games in the last 6 Nations.

England were in control away in Ireland last time. I think it'll be a wider margin at HQ.

We have a very good record v England for a start. I already said that Ireland are behind England in terms of favorites for the championship. However, lets not forget who was the only team to beat last years favorites away from home too and the only team to push NZ to the wire in 2013. Ireland will always have big games in them and I believe that this will be one of them. I dont think any team will get a GS.


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Post by ChequeredJersey Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:05 am

GunsGerms wrote:Last time Ireland played England it was a one score game. It was very close and Ireland have improved since then. Sometimes I wonder where England confidence comes from.

That was in Ireland where we have struggled and was in awful conditions, of course it was close
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Post by beshocked Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:06 am

GunsGerms England are not overrated though. 4th in the world. Should be deservedly one of the favourites in the 6 nations.

It was a one score game in Ireland, that's an away match for England.

The confidence for England comes from beating the best side in the world in 2012, running the same side relatively closely in 2013, being the only NH side in the AIs to beat the Aussies in 2013, winning 8 out of 10 6 nations games in the last 2 years.

England have been consistently a difficult side to beat except for Wales and the South Africans in the last two years.

I am not sure where your confidence of an Irish win at Twickenham comes from to be honest.

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Post by Biltong Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:08 am

Cyril wrote:7.5 is right.

Usual Gloria mischief.

You have been asked to cease and desist. Final warning
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Post by GunsGerms Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:09 am

beshocked wrote:GunsGerms England are not overrated though. 4th in the world. Should be deservedly one of the favourites in the 6 nations.

It was a one score game in Ireland, that's an away match for England.

The confidence for England comes from beating the best side in the world in 2012, running the same side relatively closely in 2013, being the only NH side in the AIs to beat the Aussies in 2013, winning 8 out of 10 6 nations games in the last 2 years.

England have been consistently a difficult side to beat except for Wales and the South Africans in the last two years.

I am not sure where your confidence of an Irish win at Twickenham comes from to be honest.

I have already explained the rational for my prediction.

England v Australia in Twickers this year was one of the worst games of rugby I have seen in a while. Both teams were fairly poor to be honest.


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Post by rodders Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:09 am

beshocked wrote:
I am not sure where your confidence of an Irish win at Twickenham comes from to be honest.

Me neither - the most likely scenario is a shellacking.
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