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Stuart Lancaster & the England Job

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Stuart Lancaster & the England Job Empty Stuart Lancaster & the England Job

Post by George Carlin Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:31 am

Stuart Lancaster & the England Job Stuart10 Stuart Lancaster & the England Job Englan12
I think that this aspect of the fallout from last night's titanic match deserves a thread of its own.

As a neutral, I am probably the person to start it as I have no truck with England's current head coach either way.

Some numbers first. The figures for Lancaster are only correct to the end of the 6N this year, so that's worth bearing in mind:

Geoff Cooke
Tenure: 16 January 1988 – 19 March 1994
Tests: 50
Won: 36
Drawn: 1
Lost: 13
Win Percentage: 72

Jack Rowell
Tenure: 4 June 1994 – 12 July 1997
Tests: 29
Won: 21
Drawn: 0
Lost: 8
Win Percentage: 72

Sir Clive Woodward
Tenure: 15 November 1997 – 2 September 2004
Tests: 83
Won: 59
Drawn: 2
Lost: 22
Win Percentage: 71

Andy Robinson
Tenure: 15 October 2004 – 29 November 2006
Tests: 22
Won: 9
Drawn: 0
Lost: 13
Win Percentage: 41

Brian Ashton
Tenure: 20 December 2006 – 1 June 2008
Tests: 22
Won: 12
Drawn: 0
Lost: 10
Win Percentage: 55

Rob Andrew
Tenure: 1 June 2008 – 30 June 2008
Tests: 2
Won: 0
Drawn: 0
Lost: 2
Win Percentage: 0

Martin Johnson
Tenure: 1 July 2008 – 16 November 2011
Tests: 38
Won: 21
Drawn: 1
Lost: 16
Win Percentage: 55

Stuart Lancaster
Tenure: 8 December 2011 – present
Tests: 42
Won: 26
Drawn: 1
Lost: 15
Win Percentage: 62

SL was in charge of his first game in March 2012.

Many regard England's failure to beat Wales as attributable directly to the head coach's tactical decisions in selection and to the apparent lack of a clear and consistent game plan which England is playing to.

My questions for the group:

1. What results are needed in this Rugby World Cup for Lancaster to keep his job? Would he still have to go if England exit in the quarters?

2. With reference to his peers above, what win ratio is expected from an England coach and is this reasonable?

3. What are the key areas in which Lancaster can be validly criticised?

4. The RFU is the most profitable union in the sport. Apart from perhaps the NZ head coach's job, there is a fair argument that being England's head coach is the most prestigious coaching appointment in rugby union football. But is it in fact something of a poisoned chalice given the overwhelming expectation to constantly be successful?


Last edited by George Carlin on Mon 28 Sep 2015, 10:59 am; edited 3 times in total
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Post by TightHEAD Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:42 am

As far as I'm concerned if we beat AUS he keeps his job, if not then he has to go and IMO the people who hired him should go too.

At the end of the day a large majority of fans were disappointed with the selections but it was working up until he made the call to sub Burgess.
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Post by beshocked Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:42 am

1. Lancaster will only keep his own job if England make the final. I would sack the other coaches after the RWC regardless of how England do.

2. Win ratio isn't as important as winning the big games. Gatland's ratio is lower but Wales have won 3 GSs and just won arguably the biggest game of his career.

Lancaster is the nearly man - almost won the GS on 4 occasions but failed, almost beat Wales but failed.

3. A lack of leadership, poor usage of the bench, a lack of a gameplan/direction at times, not winning the key games. Not picking certain players.

4.No I do t think it is. English fans gave incredible support yesterday but the team let them down. You get the best resources available, probably great salary, lots of depth of players to pick from. Being England coach would be brilliant because the rewards are great if you are successful.

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Post by Rory_Gallagher Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:44 am

The match against Australia will be the make or break for his career.

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Post by TightHEAD Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:45 am

Oh and Robshaw is a fool too. No leadership skills whatsoever and he shouldn't even be in the team when there is a possible genuine world class 7 in France.
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Post by Hammersmith harrier Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:47 am

Our problems at the breakdown really don't make ignoring Armitage easy to accept, he can be a walking penalty but I guarantee Pocock and Hooper are pleased he's not been selected.

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Post by eirebilly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 11:54 am

I like Lancaster and think that he has done a very good job after taking over the mess that was created by Rob Andrew.

The only thing I think he lacks in is strength to stand up to people like Farrell snr. He is the one that is causing England issues I feel.
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Post by Barney McGrew did it Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:02 pm

SL may become a top test coach – but it may take him 8 years of trial & error and (hopefully) learning from his mistakes. What top job allows this training on the job premise – in a professional world you usually get the job by showing clear evidence that your worthy of it (unless you’re a banker obviously). So let Stewie get his coaching credentials elsewhere and come back when he has a CV. Meanwhile the ERU apparently has lots of money – so spend it on someone who’s already proven themselves. This England team are in real danger of being bested by MJ’s 2011 team, and not a dwarf in sight.

Pros: he’s trying to develop a mobile attacking team.
Cons: he’s doesn’t seem to understand that the breakdown is an integral part of this game-plan.
Con: he seems content to sacrifice the RU set-pieces and can’t react to teams that are happy to embrace them
Con: he let his team-building mantle drop by blaming Captain Sensible and ill-discipline for a loss he himself was implicated in.
Con: the biggie – his inexperience (and bottle) fooled him into reacting to a large direct opposition by mimicking/countering it instead of sticking to his beliefs (see pro)
Con: the biggie-est: we’ve already been through this inexperience issue with MJ, why do it again?
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Post by SecretFly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:05 pm

1.  I'd say a final is still his only option for holding his role.  However, he might again convince the RFU bosses that his project is designed for 2019 rather than 2015.  But I think they'll only listen to that talk if the performances improve from here on in and he gets to a final.  If he fails to get there, I think the RFU will activate one of their get-out-clauses on the contract.

2.  England expects a win ratio in the 70s at least.  Proof being how quickly they've been going through coaches that couldn't manage it.

3.  Either listening too much to his assistant coaches or ignoring them.  We're not really to know as what goes on in the dressing room stays in the dressing room.  
But someone decided they didn't have full confidence in what England were playing up until last night.  Someone is responsible for allowing shades of doubt to suddenly creep in and colour the side chosen; and, in fact, be partly responsible for the strange lack of faith the players then had in themselves in that final quarter.  Someone sowed the mental seeds of doubt.  Lancaster must accept he's head coach and accept a lot of the blame for that turnaround.

4.  England expects.  You can't change a culture from what it is.  Every English coach knows, or should know, that nothing is satisfactory in the long term for English fans except being best.  Competing is not enough.  And if they have coaches that simply compete, that's never enough reason to keep them.

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Post by Heaf Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:12 pm

Any idea what the get-out clauses are?

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Post by englandglory4ever Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:15 pm

SL has done a brilliant job up to now. It wasn't him that gave away one kickable penalty after another first in France and then in HQ. No side can win by giving that many penalties away. Robshaw seems unable to recognise what is happening and what needs to change during a match. Tactically he is poor and has shown it before. Having said that SL was totally wrong to remove Burgess. The team became visibly weaker after he went off. He's a brilliant rugby player and a mighty fine Centre.

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Post by SecretFly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:16 pm

Oh I'm sure they have a few if they're a modern professional unit with modern and wily lawyers.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:35 pm

Ive not hidden the fact that I'm not happy with Lancaster. We may very well beat Australia but that hides many flaws.

I'm not ignorant either that he has had bad luck with injuries and loss of form to key players. However we have a huge pool of players...and I don't think he has looked properly at some of them.

He seems to put a lot on players performance in training...but for me that's only part of it. You need to watch players performance in an actual game and he hasn't done that too many who he should have looked at.

We are in a period when we are producing some amazing young talent and I'm not convinced he is the man to really make the most of that.

Lancaster has taken 4 years to get his team to an inconsistent and in my opinion an imbalanced one. Look what Schmidt has one in half the time to Ireland or Chieka has done to Australia.

A real top coach would think its Christmas taking over England.

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Post by Guest Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:51 pm

I think the Irish coach is better - he has a method, he has a plan.  Stuart Lancaster is good but I think there are better coaches out there at this level.  Leading up to this match I think Warren Gatland outsmarted Lancaster - he was confident and fairly dismissive of Lancaster's changes - despite Gatland having all the disadvantages in terms of injured players etc.  The general feeling was that Lancaster was focusing on Wales rather than England and not building on their own strengths and momentum.  

This was sort of reflected in England's own lack of discipline giving away penalties and an inability to kick on after opening up a +7 lead.  They became too relaxed, too content - because they were thinking that was enough against Wales.  England lost momentum during the game and in the end Wales were the better team.

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Sun 27 Sep 2015, 12:53 pm

englandglory4ever wrote:SL has done a brilliant job up to now. It wasn't him that gave away one kickable penalty after another first in France and then in HQ. No side can win by giving that many penalties away. Robshaw seems unable to recognise what is happening and what needs to change during a match. Tactically he is poor and has shown it before. Having said that SL was totally wrong to remove Burgess. The team became visibly weaker after he went off. He's a brilliant rugby player and a mighty fine Centre.

Lancaster was the one who made Robshaw captain so he must take as much of the blame for poor decision making as the players, if everything was hunky dory we wouldn't be giving away silly penalties all the time. Taking Burgess off was a big mistake, he was making yards every time he got the ball and had the clear upper hand on Roberts. A combination of poor management and captaincy cost us that game, both stemming from Lancaster.

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Post by George Carlin Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:03 pm

It does addle my tiny brain that Lancaster would move Barritt out of his preferred position solely in to play Burgess and then take Burgess off, therefore leaving you with none of the very select advantages of having chosen that structure in the first place.

It is always dangerous structuring a whole unit around one individual rather than having some fallback combinations. All of the eggs were in one basket with Burgess.

It's worth mentioning as well that part of Lancaster's historical problems in the midfield stem from the fact that he did exactly the same thing with Tualagi, only to then struggle to find other tried and tested options that worked when that player became injured as well.
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Post by Shifty Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:05 pm

Australia is the do or die game, basically if England win then they will need to put a big score on Uruguay to go through. It's still doable for England it really is.

Lancaster gambled or Burgess and Farrell and it worked, you can't fault that, the problem really is England don't have settled combinations, partly because of England's depth. Though Lancaster should of been more decisive in his selections, he's chopped and changed too much.
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Post by Guest Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:35 pm

Shifty wrote: ... the problem really is England don't have settled combinations, partly because of England's depth. ...
Strangely, most coaches consider that an advantage - having a squad in depth.

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Post by eirebilly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:41 pm

Shifty wrote:Australia is the do or die game, basically if England win then they will need to put a big score on Uruguay to go through.  It's still doable for England it really is.

Lancaster gambled or Burgess and Farrell and it worked, you can't fault that, the problem really is England don't have settled combinations, partly because of England's depth.  Though Lancaster should of been more decisive in his selections, he's chopped and changed too much.

I think that Burgess worked and you could see the difference when he was removed. Farrell on the other hand was good in only one area, his goal kicking. His defence, his kicking from hand, his awareness and his general play was poor in my opinion.

Lancaster seems to have difficulty in getting messages to his team and getting them to adjust to match situations. Robshaw is not a captain in my opinion, he is not forceful enough with his players like a POC is. Good player and leads by example but does not lead (if you know what I mean).
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Post by king_carlos Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:42 pm

George Carlin wrote:It does addle my tiny brain that Lancaster would move Barritt out of his preferred position solely in to play Burgess and then take Burgess off, therefore leaving you with none of the very select advantages of having chosen that structure in the first place.

It is always dangerous structuring a whole unit around one individual rather than having some fallback combinations. All of the eggs were in one basket with Burgess.

It's worth mentioning as well that part of Lancaster's historical problems in the midfield stem from the fact that he did exactly the same thing with Tualagi, only to then struggle to find other tried and tested options that worked when that player became injured as well.
Lancasters main flaw in my view is a lack of flexibility and stubborness. Once he has an idea settled in his mind that he believes may work he often struggles to move beyond it. This has regularly been visible with his use of replacements in a regimented, predetermined fashion rather than as the game would demand.

Burgess coming off was a good example of this. Bomber has not made it a secret for much of his tenure that he likes the idea of 10.Ford 12.Farrell. Yesterday it felt very clear that he was planning on having those two on the field together before the game started then couldn't change his mind when Burgess was giving all our go forward once Billy went off. I expect he didn't feel Burgess could defend the 13 channel, something I'd agree with personally, hence Barritt stayed on. Really a tough decision should have been made on whether to leave Owen on or make George sit on the bench.

People will inevitably bring Armitage into the argument after a loss such as this. It isn't the lack of Armitage that is hurting us in that regard though. It is just that we haven't at any point properly experimented with a 7 whose main defensive duty is searching for the turnover. Bomber had an excelllent opportunity to do this in the warm-ups with Kvesic having a strong season. Instead he plumped for Clark, another player who he had preformed views of that he has struggled to look beyond.

Clark had a good season as well but offers something very similar to the players we already had. It is that inflexibility and lack of willingness to develop differing options in our squad and game plan that is truly hurting us.

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Post by 123456789 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:53 pm

Those slating Lancaster for taking off Burgess are forgetting that when Burgess came off England were 10 points ahead with about 20 minutes to go, that's when you want to consolidate the lead and see the game out, Burgess gives away penalties and therefore the field position whereas in Farrell and Ford they had two decent tactical kickers and in theory an excellent defender in Barritt. Lancaster was let down by his senior players' decision making on the pitch. Barritt is supposed to be one of the leading defenders in the world yet charged out the line like a maniac, that is schoolboy defending and Robshaw decided to treat the game like it was win or die, a draw would have made it as simple as who does the best against Australis. There is little Lancaster could have done about this unless you believe the selection was wrong in the first place which on the evidence of the first 60-70 minutes it wasn't.
Having said that I don't believe Lancaster was the right man to take England to the World Cup, he is a good man manager but the depth England have developed has highlighted his inexperience as a coach, people have been keen to point out the similarities with 2003 but it is the differences that are more important, I think he was the right man for the first year or two after the World Cup but then I believe he should have stepped aside for a different coach, his lack of pragmatism and his principle is admirable but you can't argue that England wouldn't be stronger with the likes of Armitage and Hartley, nevertheless I think he is a good man and his outlook has been refreshing at a time when our sport is becoming more and more mercenary and if England win in 2019, and I believe there's a very strong change they will, then you would have to give an enormous amount of credit to Lancaster for what he did for the culture and ethos but in all honesty are England a better rugby team now than they were in 2011?

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Post by Duty281 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:54 pm

I think Lancaster will go if England are defeated by Australia; if England exit in the quarters he will probably remain, but will be under huge pressure to deliver in the 2016 Six Nations.

My biggest problem with Lancaster is his use of pre-meditated substitutions - in evidence again last night as he removed Burgess, and England fell apart.

England have also gone backwards at the crucial area of the breakdown in the last couple of years - compare the intensity from the 2012 New Zealand game to the tepid effort last night.

Still it's not all over yet!

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Post by SecretFly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:55 pm

I guess, 123, the main point of your post that will have many English posters nodding here is "Having said that".

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:57 pm

How many penalties did Burgess give away?

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:58 pm

I never wanted Lancaster or rated him so I feel like I'd be disingenuous to start suggesting otherwise now. I won't say anything until the Oz game but I'm inching closer to an 'i told you so'. I definitely think we can still beat them, they're better than us but desperation may get us over the line. And I suspect Wales will lose to them with their injuries.

I'm tempted to feel a little sorry for Lancaster and say he can't help his players making bad decisions. But I feel like there SHOULD be a plan for the eventuality we saw yesterday, and that should have been to kick for goal. Perhaps there was and it was disobeyed?

To offer some balance, I'll also admit he's made calls I thought were wrong but looked, on balance, OK i.e Burgess as a centre.

BUT. Where to start. Right from the beginning Im amazed how many people seemed to be taken in by the PR guff of 'culture' and 'playing for the shirt' blah blah blah. There is an important culture, and it is one of consistent winning. The rest is window dressing to avoid the bigger questions.

The reality is, for all the talk of the supposed shambles of Johnson he a) won us a 6Ns with worse players than we have now (IMO) and b) got us to a QF away from home, which may well be beyond Lancaster. Equally for all the talk of 'culture' we appear to have just as much ill-discipline off and on the pitch, perhaps more on the latter. It's fine to say to Tuilagi and Hartley that certain behaviour gets you out of the squad, but a really decent coach would work out how to help them stop this behaviour. That's what they do in NZ, who've had their fair share of guys go off the rails. It's rare they don't actively support them (I accept there may have been more support from Lancaster, but it's hard to see it).

Then there's our breakdown. I thought this couldn't be worse than under Johnson, when we were slow and ponderous. Both in thought and deed. But I think it now is. Intensity is one thing, accuracy from good coaching is another. That's what Ireland get with Schmidt. Lancaster and Rowntree? No. We don't hit low and blast players 5yards past the ruck, we trundle up, hug them and do that pathetic and infuriating crocodile roll nonsense. Why? How hard is it to take a leaf out of the books of other teams, even Argentina have adapted away from this.

Our backs, I'd say, have in patches been a big step up. But partly that's personnel. I'd give credit to Lancaster for picking some flyers and tricky runners, but take them away again for picking someone like Barritt at 13. Overall, we've improved in this area, but off first phase we're still a MILE behind many other teams.

Out set-piece has been horribly inconsistent under Rowntree. Again, why can't we turn up for two games in a row.

And then lastly selection. Both Johnson and Lancaster have made the mistake of dropping Haskell for a willowy, carthorse/workhorse. Wood is not good enough. He tries, he's OK in the lineout, but he's also not a modern 6. He will never make hard yards, he will never knock someone back behind the gain-line. You need a back-row with an engine, especially against Wales', but you also need one to physically dominate. He can't. There's plenty of other selection boobs I think, but this one sticks out.

We may still make it out of the group. But anyone from Eddie Jones, to Jack White, Nick Mallett, Wayne Smith...anyone would have been better than Lancaster. He's an honest decent enough coach, and probably an excellent PE (or PR) teacher. But I don't think, and never did think, he's cut out for this.

Here's hoping he makes me eat my words!

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 1:58 pm

Apologies for the rant.

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Post by SecretFly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:00 pm

ps..I told yis so! mad

Wink

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Post by rozakthegoon Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:03 pm

Who would people have as captain? Launchbury looks like he has an aura whilst being a gent.

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Post by 123456789 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:10 pm

I think the standard of rugby is higher now than it was four years ago in my opinion and England, Wales or Australia would have finished top of that group but I'd say that if you out this current Scotland squad in the 2011 pool they'd finish top as well.
Lancaster was let down by his senior players, Brown gave away the winning penalty, Barritt's defence gave away a try and even Robshaw's mother would struggle to defend that decision compare that to the performance of Alun-Wyn Jones, Warburton, Biggar and even Roberts who had a comparably quiet performance and you see a difference.
But again I'd say it's a long term failing of Lancaster, the Welsh senior players were grand slam winners with World Cup experience who'd won Lions series and won the big games against England, that's a huge pschological advantage, Robshaw, Barritt and Brown have a history, let's be brutally honest, of failure in the big games, they're brilliant players but they're inexperience in big game international rugby. In 2011 before the World Cup if you asked about who England's senior players would be you'd say Hartley, Lawes, Wood, Tuilagi and Foden, Lancaster's obsession with the refreshing and renewing lacked the necessary pragmatism.

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Post by doctor_grey Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:18 pm

Stuart Lancaster & the England Job Id-10016888

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:20 pm

rozakthegoon wrote:Who would people have as captain? Launchbury looks like he has an aura whilst being a gent.

I would let him focus on his game.

I think it depends on who will be in the squad...if Lancaster is still there don't expect many changes...if its a new coach you could see a few changes certainly to the balance of the team and tactics.


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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:23 pm

I don't  think he should lose his job at all England are not the All Blacks.

It took SCW 7/8 years to get a world beating side. The game yesterday was a bone cruncher of a game. It was a mistake to go for the corner especialy as Farrel had not missed a kick at goal all day.  That call was nothing to do with SL, it was called on the field and they did not back themselves up.

Regarding the selection of Burgess, it worked out better than many arm chair pundits thought it would. Whne it came to subing players the structcher of the game plan changed for some reason we (England ) was not as sharp in the second half as we had been in the first half.

Plus the amount of penalties we gave away was far too many for my liking.

No he should be left alone to put right the wrongs of this world cup in ready ness for the next Rugby World Cup.

And besides who would they bring in to do the job?

The likes of Rob Andrew cannot say any thing about SL coaching skills as his is a dam sight worse.

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Post by Guest Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:24 pm

Delon Armitage? England could have a fit and healthy and ready to play Jonah Lomu, a Sonny Bill Williams & a Richie Mccaw based in France and they wouldn't be picked. Stuart Lancaster - small brain mentality.

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:27 pm

beshocked wrote:1. Lancaster will only keep his own job if England make the final. I would sack the other coaches after the RWC regardless of how England do.

2. Win ratio isn't as important as winning the big games. Gatland's ratio is lower but Wales have won 3 GSs and just one arguably the biggest game of his career.

Lancaster is the nearly man - almost won the GS on 4 occasions but failed, almost beat Wales but failed.

3. A lack of leadership, poor usage of the bench, a lack of a gameplan/direction at times, not winning the key games. Not picking certain players.

4.No I do t think it is. English fans gave incredible support yesterday but the team let them down. You get the best resources available, probably great salary, lots of depth of players to pick from. Being England coach would be brilliant because the rewards are great if you are successful.

I understand what you are saying about the nearly man. But is that fact down to him SL or to the team on the field? My point is a coach can only do so much with a team, then it is down to the players on the field to day their job

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:27 pm

123456789 wrote:Those slating Lancaster for taking off Burgess are forgetting that when Burgess came off England were 10 points ahead with about 20 minutes to go, that's when you want to consolidate the lead and see the game out, Burgess gives away penalties and therefore the field position whereas in Farrell and Ford they had two decent tactical kickers and in theory an excellent defender in Barritt. Lancaster was let down by his senior players' decision making on the pitch. Barritt is supposed to be one of the leading defenders in the world yet charged out the line like a maniac, that is schoolboy defending and Robshaw decided to treat the game like it was win or die, a draw would have made it as simple as who does the best against Australis. There is little Lancaster could have done about this unless you believe the selection was wrong in the first place which on the evidence of the first 60-70 minutes it wasn't.
Having said that I don't believe Lancaster was the right man to take England to the World Cup, he is a good man manager but the depth England have developed has highlighted his inexperience as a coach, people have been keen to point out the similarities with 2003 but it is the differences that are more important, I think he was the right man for the first year or two after the World Cup but then I believe he should have stepped aside for a different coach, his lack of pragmatism and his principle is admirable but you can't argue that England wouldn't be stronger with the likes of Armitage and Hartley, nevertheless I think he is a good man and his outlook has been refreshing at a time when our sport is becoming more and more mercenary and if England win in 2019, and I believe there's a very strong change they will, then you would have to give an enormous amount of credit to Lancaster for what he did for the culture and ethos but in all honesty are England a better rugby team now than they were in 2011?

I'm sorry but what 'culture' what 'ethos'. Has the behaviour of players markedly improved on and off the pitch? Have players been obviously more proud? It's total and utter drivel in my opinion. I can accept the need for a common culture re expectations of conduct etc. but when it ultimately cost us our best hooker and one of our most destructive backs, you perhaps need to look at different ways to work with different players.

The sort of culture that's really important, as much as hate to give credit to Blockhead, is that which Wales have shown. The sort that their training camps are built to foster - trust in one another through shared adversity, an unwillingness to let others down and a genuine esprit de corps...not a 'player led' culture of pinning up lists of good behaviour, or whatever. Lancaster talks a good game on culture but has done nothing of substance that I can see to merit any praise. Unlike, annoyingly, Gatland.

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:28 pm

SecretFly wrote:ps..I told yis so! mad

Wink

Told us what?

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Post by SecretFly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:31 pm

oh I was just finishing your rant for you Hood Wink


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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:34 pm

Barney McGrew did it wrote:SL may become a top test coach – but it may take him 8 years of trial & error and (hopefully) learning from his mistakes. What top job allows this training on the job premise – in a professional world you usually get the job by showing clear evidence that your worthy of it (unless you’re a banker obviously). So let Stewie get his coaching credentials elsewhere and come back when he has a CV. Meanwhile the ERU apparently has lots of money – so spend it on someone who’s already proven themselves. This England team are in real danger of being bested by MJ’s 2011 team, and not a dwarf in sight.

Pros: he’s trying to develop a mobile attacking team.
Cons: he’s doesn’t seem to understand that the breakdown is an integral part of this game-plan.
Con: he seems content to sacrifice the RU set-pieces and can’t react to teams that are happy to embrace them
Con: he let his team-building mantle drop by blaming Captain Sensible and ill-discipline for a loss he himself was implicated in.
Con: the biggie – his inexperience (and bottle) fooled him into reacting to a large direct opposition by mimicking/countering it instead of sticking to his beliefs (see pro)
Con: the biggie-est: we’ve already been through this inexperience issue with MJ, why do it again?

Should have read this, far more succinct than my point, but bang on IMO

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Post by Shifty Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:35 pm

I don't think Lancaster is doing that badly, truth is in the 6 Nations Ireland, Wales, England and France are all very close to each other. People think England have a god given right to be successful but they don't. England have lost 4 times in 12 games thats pretty impressive. Lancaster has also beaten New Zealand and Australia during his tenure, while Gatland can't match that.
In fact the only bad loss England have suffered in his tenure is the 30-3 loss to Wales. If England had won a marginal game yesterday this topic wouldn't even be discussed. Lancaster is a good coach.
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Post by Rugby Fan Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:41 pm

I don't think it's worth acting as if all of Lancaster's shortcomings were on show in one match. Some things he tried did work. To date, Dean Ryan comes closest to how I'm feeling about the match.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2015/sep/27/dean-ryan-column-england-wales-identity

If we don't get out of the group, then I'd hope Lancaster would realize he had failed to get the best out of his players and stand aside.

If we beat Australia, and make it through, then I won't be calling for his head but I don't think our coaching team has out-thought the opposition for a very long time.

I've criticized Lancaster on this forum for failing to develop leaders. Tom Wood is Robshaw's deputy but he has hardly led the team, and at one point, could have lost his place to Haskell. Hartley was given responsibility, but that always a risk as he kept getting sent off while leading his club. Barritt is cited as a defensive leader but Lancaster spent a lot of time trying to find a player to replace him.

We have never identified two or three players to be the core leadership group supporting Robshaw. You can't just hope it will develop naturally, you have to nurture it.

That didn't all conspire to lose us the match against Wales but it was a factor, and will be a factor in future losses unless we address the matter.

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Post by doctor_grey Sun 27 Sep 2015, 2:43 pm

I wonder what England's record is under Lancaster, with Hartley and without Hartley.

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 3:08 pm

SecretFly wrote:oh I was just finishing your rant for you Hood Wink


Haha, thanks Secret Wink Interesting reading your take on English expectations by the way. I think you're right. Personally I'd hope/expect us to be in the top 4 very consistently. With the SH teams the ones we're competing with, occasionally France, Ireland or Wales, but always around 4 or better based on resources etc.

I'd very happily swap Lancaster for Schmidt

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Post by Hood83 Sun 27 Sep 2015, 3:16 pm

Shifty wrote:I don't think Lancaster is doing that badly, truth is in the 6 Nations Ireland, Wales, England and France are all very close to each other.  People think England have a god given right to be successful but they don't.  England have lost 4 times in 12 games thats pretty impressive.  Lancaster has also beaten New Zealand and Australia during his tenure, while Gatland can't match that.  
In fact the only bad loss England have suffered in his tenure is the 30-3 loss to Wales.  If England had won a marginal game yesterday this topic wouldn't even be discussed.  Lancaster is a good coach.  

Perhaps. But given the opprobrium heaped on Johnson, at what point do we start to point out Lancaster's record may not actually be all that much better

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Post by Shifty Sun 27 Sep 2015, 3:27 pm

Hood83 wrote:
Shifty wrote:I don't think Lancaster is doing that badly, truth is in the 6 Nations Ireland, Wales, England and France are all very close to each other.  People think England have a god given right to be successful but they don't.  England have lost 4 times in 12 games thats pretty impressive.  Lancaster has also beaten New Zealand and Australia during his tenure, while Gatland can't match that.  
In fact the only bad loss England have suffered in his tenure is the 30-3 loss to Wales.  If England had won a marginal game yesterday this topic wouldn't even be discussed.  Lancaster is a good coach.  

Perhaps. But given the opprobrium heaped on Johnson, at what point do we start to point out Lancaster's record may not actually be all that much better

The England squad was behaving like animals under Johnson and were embarrassing. Lancaster is at least prepared to say to idiots like Tugilani and Hartley that he doesn't want people like them in his squads.
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Post by eirebilly Sun 27 Sep 2015, 3:32 pm

Shifty wrote:

The England squad was behaving like animals under Johnson and were embarrassing.  Lancaster is at least prepared to say to idiots like Tugilani and Hartley that he doesn't want people like them in his squads.    

Heartley may be an eejit but he is the best 2 England have. I think that Lancaster should not have tried to change his character, he is better when playing his niggly game.
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Post by yappysnap Sun 27 Sep 2015, 3:32 pm

One thing that does upset me is the repeating of past mistakes that the RFU, Andrew and co keep putting is through.

MJ is picked on the back of zero experience. He has a whole series of terrible games, but also manages a few amazing games mainly thanks to new exciting players playing out of their skins (those wins v Oz). A new era of a young attacking England is coming around and the RWC is looking good. We get to the tournament, the coaches panic, lose faith in the players that got them there, results go wrong and it all goes jubblies up.

In comes Lancaster, chosen off the back of diddly squat. He had a whole series of limited games but we get the W's. We then get a few out standing games, amongst more close games, weird selections and poor games etc. All in all we come into the RWC with a young ex icing England team that can attack well. We then go completely away from that and things go wrong...

Broken record? It's like Groundhog Day people!

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Post by DaveM Sun 27 Sep 2015, 4:16 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:I don't think it's worth acting as if all of Lancaster's shortcomings were on show in one match. Some things he tried did work. To date, Dean Ryan comes closest to how I'm feeling about the match.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2015/sep/27/dean-ryan-column-england-wales-identity

.

This point:

England don’t pass the ball well in attack and when the only distributor is also the only kicker among the first or second receivers it creates extra problems in that the opposition flankers and centres know who they are going for. Fiji knew they had to get to Ford and that’s what they did, making the outside-half’s life, which he prefers to live on the gain line, a constant problem.

is one I've been making since the warm up in Paris. We simply cannot expect a single play-maker to win us the WC, whether it is Farrell or Ford.

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Post by yappysnap Sun 27 Sep 2015, 4:26 pm

What's even more baffling is that SL knows that.

In the first warm up we played three play makers and the backline was out standing, Farrell suddenly looked a threat ball in hand and our wings got ball in space and made dents.

Since then Lancaster has ignored that totally, which is baffling as we've now looked clueless, beatable and lost.

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Post by yappysnap Sun 27 Sep 2015, 4:27 pm

So why will Stewart Lancaster only field 1 play maker?

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Post by DaveM Sun 27 Sep 2015, 4:30 pm

First up, it was a poor selection and a terrible bench. How can you have a specialist FH and a specialist FB on the bench when your centres are one dimensional players and your wingers can't play in the centre? The Goode selection was so pointless I'm not even sure he got onto the pitch.

Does this make SL a terrible coach? I don't think so. I think England have progressed a lot. To say culture doesn't matter in a team game strikes me as bizarre. I doubt any coach would ever trust Hartley enough to select him again now, and I'm not sure Tuilagi (for various reasons) will play that much more for England, whoever the coach is.

If we did change coach the only differences I could imagine are:

- Changes at 6 and 7. Arguably SL made a mistake making Robshaw his captain, as it has really limited our options on the flank. I could imagine another coach going for Burgess (or perhaps Robshaw) at 6 and one of Clark, Kvesic or even Clifford at 7.
- Itoje will replace Parling in the matchday 23 (which will happen under SL anyway)
- A long-term answer at 12, which I think will almost certainly be Slade (again this will probably happen under SL too).
- SCW (perhaps the most likely replacement) would pick Cipriani at 10.

I think that's it. That suggests to me that the players SL has in and around the side are fundamentally the right ones and that he's done a decent job. I think Farrell and Catt have created an effective defence and the most incisive England attack for a decade.

I expect that as long as England get out of the group SL will be given another 4 years, like SCW was in 1999. There may be a case for replacing Rowntree - he's a highly respected coach, but maybe it's time for the forwards to hear a different voice.

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