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Ireland Squad Discussion

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Post by Notch Sat 27 Feb 2016, 9:56 pm

First topic message reminder :

Continuing on from Ireland Squad Announcement Thread.
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Post by Rory_Gallagher Tue 01 Mar 2016, 6:16 pm

McCloskey was rarely even used as a crash ball runner though, nor to influence the game with his offloading skills. I think Schmidt was trying to trick the English side into thinking McCloskey would run the ball and instead he was used mostly as an extra playmaker. It didn't work, like the rest of our strategy. It would be very hard to judge his performance on that game honestly.

When we decide to actually utilise him properly in the right areas of the field then we can properly gauge how dangerous he can be with ball in hand. We literally did nothing in the opposition 22 and most of our backline moves were created in our own 22. Another silly tactic that hasn't worked.

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Post by kunu Tue 01 Mar 2016, 6:33 pm

That's pretty much what I'm saying yeah. Mccloskey is full of potential at 12, but he simply didn't do enough to prove to be a revelation last weekend. I think he might really shine against Italy or Scotland if given the chance. Scotland in particular have looked quite poor in defence lately. I'd love to see Stu get the chance to do some damage there.

It will drive supporters (me included) mad if we revert to the Payne/Henshaw combo for Italy. Im sure Schmidt will highlight the importance of getting a win under our belts, and if they're picked, use that as justification. But, in my opinion, we really really don't need to be so wary of the Italians. I understand that Payne/Henshaw is great for big one off games and certain styles, but realistically our club teams could pick second string XV's and beat Treviso or Zebre in Ireland without much trouble. Parisee and Campagnaro do give them a big boost, but regardless, I think paying Italy too much respect is a self fulfilling prophecy sometimes. We don't need to be conservative against them, even in the circumstances we find ourselves in.
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Post by Sin é Tue 01 Mar 2016, 6:41 pm

rodders wrote:
Sin é wrote:We badly need a few enforcers. Far too meek and mild.

Agree with this.

We could also do with a bit of this as well from one or two players:

Nigel Owens ‏@Nigelrefowens  19h19 hours ago
@stringer9 @SaleSharksRugby your just like wine . you get better with age lol
well done.

Peter Stringer ‏@stringer9  19h19 hours ago
@Nigelrefowens Ha thanks Nigel,at least it will give me the chance to referee alongside you again

Nigel Owens ‏@Nigelrefowens 18h18 hours ago
@stringer9 brilliant
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Post by Gretgael1 Tue 01 Mar 2016, 7:40 pm

Our line out, our passive defence and our inaccurate basic skills let us down. To see us trying to run from our 22 was positive and we were looking to exploit space out wide but this breaks down when we can't execute basic skills.

Kearney throwing a pass to McCloskey which he had to catch at head height is just terrible and led to McCloskey getting smashed and no gain made. That fact that McCloskey is 6ft 3" makes it even worse. How many attacks broke down because of slow or poor passing?

Our line out needs to be sorted quick. It seems that there's a major breakdown. I can't just point to one person, maybe it was the throws, maybe the calls, maybe the lifting, maybe the poor ball retention, but they all added. We seem to be very slow and ponderous and England read us and easily picked us off. Unforgivable losing three line outs in their 22.

Our passive defence is another issue that constantly pops up. There were times when we needed to shoot out of the line to close the space out wide but it didn't happen. We kicked poor and our chase was even worse. Too many people involved in rucks when there was no need, making our defence narrow. It wasn't needed, England didn't pile players into rucks but we did and then it's just a case of numbers.

We can improve on these things with time and the fact that we are trying to play more expansive is promising. Also, we have four new caps and they've looked exciting and that's a big plus.

15. Payne
14. Earls
13. Henshaw
12. McCloskey
11. Zebo
10. Sexton
9. Murray
1. Mcgrath
2. Best
3. Ross
4. Ryan
5. Toner
6. Stander
7. VDF
8. Heaslip

Cronin, Healy, Furlong, Dillane, Ruddock, Marmion, Jackson, Gilroy.

That's my team for Italy. Good mix of youth and experience.  Madigan was only on the bench because of versatility but with Payne full back and Earls on the wing we have cover for Midfield. Henshaw and Zebo can cover full back, even gilroy and Earls. Take Kearney out of the 23 and it frees up other positions.

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Post by profitius Tue 01 Mar 2016, 9:55 pm

kunu wrote:That's pretty much what I'm saying yeah. Mccloskey is full of potential at 12, but he simply didn't do enough to prove to be a revelation last weekend..


He made 32m (I think), had a nice kick through which resulted in an Irish penalty and his size came in handy stopping Hartley on the line. Also, the hospital pass he received, he did very well to retain possession of the ball. We didn't see him much but he did make an impact. Henshaw made a big impact also. It was good to see him not being used as a battering ram.


The partnership will need time to grow. I think they can become a very effective partnership. There is also the possibility that Henshaw can be moved to fullback, which many think is his best position.


I thought VDF had a solid game. He said he scored that try and I thought it was 90% certain at the time that he got it down. Its crazy that it was ruled out when it looked a certainty to be a try. There are crazy rules in rugby.
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Post by asoreleftshoulder Wed 02 Mar 2016, 10:58 am

Gretgael1 wrote:Our line out, our passive defence and our inaccurate basic skills let us down. To see us trying to run from our 22 was positive and we were looking to exploit space out wide but this breaks down when we can't execute basic skills.

Kearney throwing a pass to McCloskey which he had to catch at head height is just terrible and led to McCloskey getting smashed and no gain made. That fact that McCloskey is 6ft 3" makes it even worse. How many attacks broke down because of slow or poor passing?

Our line out needs to be sorted quick. It seems that there's a major breakdown. I can't just point to one person, maybe it was the throws, maybe the calls, maybe the lifting, maybe the poor ball retention, but they all added. We seem to be very slow and ponderous and England read us and easily picked us off. Unforgivable losing three line outs in their 22.

Our passive defence is another issue that constantly pops up. There were times when we needed to shoot out of the line to close the space out wide but it didn't happen. We kicked poor and our chase was even worse. Too many people involved in rucks when there was no need, making our defence narrow. It wasn't needed, England didn't pile players into rucks but we did and then it's just a case of numbers.

We can improve on these things with time and the fact that we are trying to play more expansive is promising. Also, we have four new caps and they've looked exciting and that's a big plus.

15. Payne
14. Earls
13. Henshaw
12. McCloskey
11. Zebo
10. Sexton
9. Murray
1. Mcgrath
2. Best
3. Ross
4. Ryan
5. Toner
6. Stander
7. VDF
8. Heaslip

Cronin, Healy, Furlong, Dillane, Ruddock, Marmion, Jackson, Gilroy.

That's my team for Italy. Good mix of youth and experience.  Madigan was only on the bench because of versatility but with Payne full back and Earls on the wing we have cover for Midfield. Henshaw and Zebo can cover full back, even gilroy and Earls. Take Kearney out of the 23 and it frees up other positions.

I was really happy to see that the times we ran it in our own 22 it was actually on and it wasn't just running it for the sake of it like we seemed to do against France.Kearneys pass to McCloskey was a great example of our skills letting us down,even though England read the play we still should have executed and Kearney either threw a hoorible pass to McCloskey or else tried a skip pass to Trimble and there was a mix up in communication,either way it was the right play at the right time,just the execution was wrong.
That will come and we have to hope that Farrell can improve the defense,our scrum will be strong once Ross stays fit but we need Moore and Furlong to develop rapidly while our maul showed some signs of improvement against England.We're still a fair bit off where we need to be but we look like a team that knows where it's going,it's just going to take a bit of time to get there.

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Post by GunsGerms Wed 02 Mar 2016, 11:09 am

profitius wrote:
kunu wrote:That's pretty much what I'm saying yeah. Mccloskey is full of potential at 12, but he simply didn't do enough to prove to be a revelation last weekend..


He made 32m (I think), had a nice kick through which resulted in an Irish penalty and his size came in handy stopping Hartley on the line. Also, the hospital pass he received, he did very well to retain possession of the ball. We didn't see him much but he did make an impact. Henshaw made a big impact also. It was good to see him not being used as a battering ram.


The partnership will need time to grow. I think they can become a very effective partnership. There is also the possibility that Henshaw can be moved to fullback, which many think is his best position.


I thought VDF had a solid game. He said he scored that try and I thought it was 90% certain at the time that he got it down. Its crazy that it was ruled out when it looked a certainty to be a try. There are crazy rules in rugby.

For a debut I thought he did really well to be honest.

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Post by geoff999rugby Wed 02 Mar 2016, 3:58 pm

I have a dream:

First choice 12,13,15 - McCloskey, Henshaw, Payne
Backup 12,13,15 - Olding, Marshall, Kearney
Pushing the above hard - Ringrose

Only the following players selected for 11 and 14 and none of them selected in any other position
Bowe, Trimble, Fitzgerald, Zebo, Earls, Gilroy, Healy

Will my dream ever come true ?

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Post by asoreleftshoulder Wed 02 Mar 2016, 4:29 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:I have a dream:

First choice 12,13,15 - McCloskey, Henshaw, Payne
Backup 12,13,15 - Olding, Marshall, Kearney
Pushing the above hard - Ringrose

Only the following players selected for 11 and 14 and none of them selected in any other position
Bowe, Trimble, Fitzgerald, Zebo, Earls, Gilroy, Healy

Will my dream ever come true ?

Nope

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Post by rodders Wed 02 Mar 2016, 4:30 pm

GunsGerms wrote:
profitius wrote:
kunu wrote:That's pretty much what I'm saying yeah. Mccloskey is full of potential at 12, but he simply didn't do enough to prove to be a revelation last weekend..


He made 32m (I think), had a nice kick through which resulted in an Irish penalty and his size came in handy stopping Hartley on the line. Also, the hospital pass he received, he did very well to retain possession of the ball. We didn't see him much but he did make an impact. Henshaw made a big impact also. It was good to see him not being used as a battering ram.


The partnership will need time to grow. I think they can become a very effective partnership. There is also the possibility that Henshaw can be moved to fullback, which many think is his best position.


I thought VDF had a solid game. He said he scored that try and I thought it was 90% certain at the time that he got it down. Its crazy that it was ruled out when it looked a certainty to be a try. There are crazy rules in rugby.

For a debut I thought he did really well to be honest.

I thought all 3 new guys were excellent and standout players in a poor performance.

One great half break by McCloskey in the second half when he shrugged off Itoje and Youngs showed what hes about and effected one great choke tackle turnover - pity he didn't see more of the ball.

This guy doesn't have potential, he's a top quality player now - certainly was better than Henshaw who was pretty poor to be honest, weak in defense and made a rookie mistake of not diving earlier or coming infield when he made the break.

Super impressed by VDF too, he looked quick and powerful and should have had a try as well.
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Post by geoff999rugby Wed 02 Mar 2016, 4:40 pm

asoreleftshoulder wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:I have a dream:

First choice 12,13,15 - McCloskey, Henshaw, Payne
Backup 12,13,15 - Olding, Marshall, Kearney
Pushing the above hard - Ringrose

Only the following players selected for 11 and 14 and none of them selected in any other position
Bowe, Trimble, Fitzgerald, Zebo, Earls, Gilroy, Healy

Will my dream ever come true ?

Nope

Thought not

Right that it Schmidt out Run

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Post by Gretgael1 Wed 02 Mar 2016, 5:05 pm

“This guy doesn't have potential, he's a top quality player now - certainly was better than Henshaw who was pretty poor to be honest, weak in defense and made a rookie mistake of not diving earlier or coming infield when he made the break“

Henshaw was far from poor. He made 8 of 9 attempted tackles. He was passive at times but so was everyone else. He did make some good reads and scrambled well. This is his first international start at 13, a position that is more difficult to defend. I'm not fully sure but I'd imagine he made more ground than any other Irish player. He was unlucky with his break, I don't think diving earlier was the answer but he should have been more aggressive with Nowell and stepped further infield. If you look at again I think he thought he could make it, realised he couldn't, switched the ball for the hand off but he was just too close to the line.

McCloskey was decent, we should have sent him down Ford's channel early just to let him know what was in store for the next 80 but we used him to move it out wide. When he got his hands on the ball in the second half he showed some of what he can do. He was sloppy with his ball presentation at time but overall it was a good debut.

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Post by Rory_Gallagher Wed 02 Mar 2016, 6:35 pm

It's funny, the English are raving about Itoje's first start while some of the Irish fans have been critical of van der Flier's first cap. If you look at the statistics, both are almost identical. JvdF also nearly scored a try (which really was a try) and ran excellent supporting lines throughout. His passing and offloading was top notch, better than what most of the Irish team have ever produced.

I think the main criticism was when he was fended by Vunipola off the scrum. It looked rather weak, but this guy is a ferocious tackler generally so he will learn from it. It isn't like the rest of the team were able to tackle Vunipola. Maro Itoje on the other hand was shrugged off by a centre on his debut, but the English fans seem a lot less fickle and more forgiving.

Anyway, I thought all 3 caps played very well. I was a little disappointed with McCloskey overall but based on the quality of the passes he received he did very well. His distribution was much better than the rest of his team mates.

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Post by theslosty Wed 02 Mar 2016, 8:04 pm

For all this talk of a poor performance, if the vdF try had counted as it should have we would have had 7 minutes to score against a tiring England side down to 14.
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Post by profitius Wed 02 Mar 2016, 10:44 pm

Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase. I think theres a big rebuild on the way and Ireland will be in a rebuild phase for the next 2 seasons. I doubt many of the following will be there by then: Ross, Kearney, Best, White, Strauss, Trimble, Reddan, McCarthy, Heaslip, Bowe, Henry, Cave. There'll also be some in the danger zone, such as: Earls, Fitzgerald, Donnacha Ryan, Toner. Any outside back around 30 years old has usually - but not always - lost their top end pace.

Maybe 5 of 6 of that list will still be around the squad.


I'll take a wild guess at some of the players who I think could be there abouts in 2 years.
Dooley, Buckley, Porter, Herring, Tracy, Sherry, Bealham, Conan O'Donnell, Molony, John Madigan, James Ryan, Alan O'Connor, O'Donoghue, Leavy, Masterson, Carbery, Ross Byrne, Ringrose, Arnold, Kelleher, Sweetnam, Scholes, Stockdale. There'll be others too.


Not sure about scrum halves. The overall standard of Irish 9s is dreadful, although both of the current U20 9s look very good.
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Post by Engine#4 Wed 02 Mar 2016, 10:59 pm

Rory_Gallagher wrote:It's funny, the English are raving about Itoje's first start while some of the Irish fans have been critical of van der Flier's first cap. If you look at the statistics, both are almost identical. JvdF also nearly scored a try (which really was a try)

I think the main criticism was when he was fended by Vunipola off the scrum.

Tommy O'Donnell would have made that tackle, and scored that try.  Whistle

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Post by geoff999rugby Wed 02 Mar 2016, 11:01 pm

Scholes wont be there and no way Arnold will be in front of Marshall or Olding

Way too early to consider someone like Stockdale and I suspect others you have listed
Porter is way behind McGrath, and Marmion
AOC, Herring yes I agree
You can add McCall to that list

That is my opinion on the Ulster contingent

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Post by profitius Wed 02 Mar 2016, 11:08 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:Scholes wont be there and no way Arnold will be in front of Marshall or Olding

Way too early to consider someone like Stockdale and I suspect others you have listed
Porter is way behind McGrath, and Marmion
AOC, Herring yes I agree
You can add McCall to that list

That is my opinion on the Ulster contingent


I didn't include Marshall or Olding because they're capped already but I agree Arnold is behind them.
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Post by eirebilly Thu 03 Mar 2016, 8:34 am

McCloskey more than proved what we had all been seeing for Ulster, he is ready for International rugby. I also thought that Henshaw played very well in a struggling side. I would love to see their partnership be invested in by giving them a long run together.

Those two offer a lot more threat than Henshaw/Payne so if Schmidt reverts back to that then I will not be happy at all.

VdF, had an outstanding game I thought, a lot better than some on here think and he has deserved a place in the next match.

I would like to see Jackson start as well (at the very least on the bench).

Its up to Schmidt now to make such calls and if he chooses to go with his trusted but out of form players then I think he will see a definite swing from his supporters.
A small percentage of us saw this coming last 6N and during the RWC. Its not too late for him and he is a very good coach but he must now take action.
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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 03 Mar 2016, 8:50 am

profitius wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:Scholes wont be there and no way Arnold will be in front of Marshall or Olding

Way too early to consider someone like Stockdale and I suspect others you have listed
Porter is way behind McGrath, and Marmion
AOC, Herring yes I agree
You can add McCall to that list

That is my opinion on the Ulster contingent


I didn't include Marshall or Olding because they're capped already but I agree Arnold is behind them.

Understood - as an fYi Herring has also been capped

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Post by Pete330v2 Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:04 am

eirebilly wrote:McCloskey more than proved what we had all been seeing for Ulster, he is ready for International rugby. I also thought that Henshaw played very well in a struggling side. I would love to see their partnership be invested in by giving them a long run together.

Those two offer a lot more threat than Henshaw/Payne so if Schmidt reverts back to that then I will not be happy at all.

VdF, had an outstanding game I thought, a lot better than some on here think and he has deserved a place in the next match.

I would like to see Jackson start as well (at the very least on the bench).

Its up to Schmidt now to make such calls and if he chooses to go with his trusted but out of form players then I think he will see a definite swing from his supporters.
A small percentage of us saw this coming last 6N and during the RWC. Its not too late for him and he is a very good coach but he must now take action.

As usual that's exactly how I'm feeling Billy although I was daft enough to trust Joe was holding something back in the RWC for which I was proved wrong. The trusted players are obviously not going to win us anything, some aren't international standard and probably never were and other have simply reached their sell by date. The thing is whether Joe inexplicably waits to begin rebuilding. The best thing to do now is go with the on-form players in their correct positions and just give it a lash, play some rugby. I fear he might stick to his guns in which case it could be squeaky bum time in the final two matches.

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Post by Notch Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:13 am

Pete330v2 wrote: although I was daft enough to trust Joe was holding something back in the RWC for which I was proved wrong.

I don't know if you were, to be honest. We were aiming to peak at the quarter-finals and yet the players we build our game around were mainly absent due to injury at that point. Thats how it will go in the history books. But had we those players against Argentina it could have gone very differently. Thats speculative, but so is saying we weren't holding anything back. A lot of plays would very much depend on Sexton, which is obviously a weakness of ours that has been exposed. Our defence after Payne was injured was also not up to scratch.

Pete330v2 wrote:The thing is whether Joe inexplicably waits to begin rebuilding.

He just gave three players their first caps in the hardest game of the Six Nations.


Last edited by Notch on Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Notch Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:16 am

theslosty wrote:For all this talk of a poor performance, if the vdF try had counted as it should have we would have had 7 minutes to score against a tiring England side down to 14.

Thems the margins. I was impressed with how we hung in there, but the overall standard of the Six Nations is very low for a variety of reasons- England should have been further ahead but for their own profligacy.

Still, I haven't yet seen us outclassed and thought there's no way we could have won any of our games. We were in those games until the very end. We have the ability to get back to competing for this title in the next season or two.


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Post by eirebilly Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:18 am

Pete,

I keep reading from people that Joe was brave to select the 3 debutants against England. I don't think he was, injuries forced him to pick the debutants. Would these players played if the other boys were not injured? I don't think so.

Sad as it is that players were injured but maybe the performances of the debutants was a kick in the rear that Joe required in order to see that form players should be selected...
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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:25 am

Notch wrote:
He just gave three players their first caps in the hardest game of the Six Nations.

Forced on him by an very long injury list - not by choice.

No new caps would have occurred if he had say McCarthy, SOB and Payne available.

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Post by Gretgael1 Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:28 am

I don't like to single out players but I do feel if we drop Rob Kearney it will free up the 23. The reason Madigan and the likes of Dave Kearney/ Fergus Mcfadden are picked is because of versatility. Putting Payne full back we will have cover for the centre, along with Earls. We also have cover for full back with Henshaw, Zebo, Earls. I would have Jackson and Gilroy on the bench. Gilroy covers the wing and full back and then finally we can have a specialist 10, and a better quality 10 on the bench.

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Post by eirebilly Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:42 am

Gretgael1 wrote:I don't like to single out players but I do feel if we drop Rob Kearney it will free up the 23. The reason Madigan and the likes of Dave Kearney/ Fergus Mcfadden are picked is because of versatility. Putting Payne full back we will have cover for the centre, along with Earls. We also have cover for full back with Henshaw, Zebo, Earls. I would have Jackson and Gilroy on the bench. Gilroy covers the wing and full back and then finally we can have a specialist 10, and a better quality 10 on the bench.

I actually thought that Kearney had a decent game last week, still looks for contact on the counter but defensively and under the high ball he looked much better.

That said, I simply cannot ignore Payne's performances for Ulster from 15 where he looked simply a class above the rest. He was countering with intelligence and bringing the backs into the game. He could certainly do that for Ireland as well.

Gilroy on the bench is a good shout thumbsup

I would also like to see Marmion start.
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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:53 am

Notch wrote:
theslosty wrote:For all this talk of a poor performance, if the vdF try had counted as it should have we would have had 7 minutes to score against a tiring England side down to 14.

Thems the margins. I was impressed with how we hung in there, but the overall standard of the Six Nations is very low for a variety of reasons- England should have been further ahead but for their own profligacy.

Still, I haven't yet seen us outclassed and thought there's no way we could have won any of our games. We were in those games until the very end. We have the ability to get back to competing for this title in the next season or two.

Only just being beaten by poorish sides is not much of a recommendation

This 6Nations has shown me 2 things:

One the NH has learnt nothing from the WC and is still way behind the SH.

I watch a fair bit of the Aviva and if Eddie Jones gets it right the talent coming through should mean England dominate the next few years.
Ireland do not have the pack to compete - I do not see the replacements for the declining Ross, SOB, Heaslip and you have to assume Best.
McGrath, Henderson, POM are shoo ins but where is the rest of the pack to dominate in the years to come

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Post by Pete330v2 Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:56 am

Payne at 15 even before his Ulster days reminded me of how I used to watch Christian Cullen in complete awe. I think you can honestly use the 'world class' phrase in his case. At 13 before his Ulster move he was one of, if not THE form 13 in New Zealand and the AB's weren't keen to let him go. That was in a different environment however and even then he still didn't show the magic he demonstrate from 15.

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Post by Gretgael1 Thu 03 Mar 2016, 9:59 am

The thing is with Kearney is that he is not conducive to the game we want to play. I thought he was OK the weekend but nothing special. I hate the excuse that he's a leader,  for me a leader performs consistently on the field.


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Post by Gretgael1 Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:32 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
Notch wrote:
theslosty wrote:For all this talk of a poor performance, if the vdF try had counted as it should have we would have had 7 minutes to score against a tiring England side down to 14.

Thems the margins. I was impressed with how we hung in there, but the overall standard of the Six Nations is very low for a variety of reasons- England should have been further ahead but for their own profligacy.

Still, I haven't yet seen us outclassed and thought there's no way we could have won any of our games. We were in those games until the very end. We have the ability to get back to competing for this title in the next season or two.

Only just being beaten by poorish sides is not much of a recommendation

This 6Nations has shown me 2 things:

One the NH has learnt nothing from the WC and is still way behind the SH.

I watch a fair bit of the Aviva and if Eddie Jones gets it right the talent coming through should mean England dominate the next few years.
Ireland do not have the pack to compete - I do not see the replacements for the declining Ross, SOB, Heaslip and you have to assume Best.
McGrath, Henderson, POM are shoo ins but where is the rest of the pack to dominate in the years to come

We have some good prospects coming through. Moore, if he can stay fit, and Furlong are promising but we might not see the best of them for another couple of years. We are light at hooker after Best. Cronin, Struass and Herring are all reasonable good. We've a plethora of talent at loosehead.

Second row is still short but with Henderson, Dillane, Moloney, Ryan coming through we have some promise. We've still guys like Alan O Connor and maybe Kearney that could do a job as well.

Backrow we've the likes of Conan, VDF, Stander, Ruddock that have all been capped, but are inexperienced at this level, to add to SOB, POM.

A part of me would love to see Henderson/SOB/Stander or Conan line out in the backrow against South Africa for one test, with Toner and Dillane second row. Toner just for the line out. I'm not even sure about balance or that we should try and play them at their own game but it would be carnage and probably not the smartest thing to do.

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Post by rodders Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:35 am

profitius wrote:Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase.

Why is the average age 28 then? Utter rubbish by Schmidt who has turned into another IRFU puppet and seems to have totally lost his nerve after the Argentina game.
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Post by rodders Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:37 am

Pete330v2 wrote:Payne at 15 even before his Ulster days reminded me of how I used to watch Christian Cullen in complete awe.

Ah here now, Payne is quality but he's not to be compared to the Paekakariki Express!
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Post by gleesonisgod Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:41 am

rodders wrote:
profitius wrote:Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase.

Why is the average age 28 then? Utter rubbish by Schmidt who has turned into another IRFU puppet and seems to have totally lost his nerve after the Argentina game.

Is having an average age of 28 not a good thing? It's generally considered the age when players peak.

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Post by rodders Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:42 am

Rory_Gallagher wrote:It's funny, the English are raving about Itoje's first start while some of the Irish fans have been critical of van der Flier's first cap.

Can't understand why he was one of the best players on the pitch. I'd have him ahead of O'Brien at this stage in their careers.

Given the IRFU have spent big dough on O'Brien, based on his 2011- 2012 form presumably, he'll likely have to bide his time for a few years though.
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Post by rodders Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:43 am

gleesonisgod wrote:
rodders wrote:
profitius wrote:Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase.

Why is the average age 28 then? Utter rubbish by Schmidt who has turned into another IRFU puppet and seems to have totally lost his nerve after the Argentina game.

Is having an average age of 28 not a good thing? It's generally considered the age when players peak.

Not if you are rebuilding its not. If this is the peak then we're in big trouble over the next few years.
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Post by gleesonisgod Thu 03 Mar 2016, 10:53 am

rodders wrote:
gleesonisgod wrote:
rodders wrote:
profitius wrote:Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase.

Why is the average age 28 then? Utter rubbish by Schmidt who has turned into another IRFU puppet and seems to have totally lost his nerve after the Argentina game.

Is having an average age of 28 not a good thing? It's generally considered the age when players peak.

Not if you are rebuilding its not. If this is the peak then we're in big trouble over the next few years.

Most of the team will still be as good come the next WC. I really don't think the age of our team is a problem.

For the players who won't be around next WC, or could easily be substantially worse (Best,Ross,Heaslip,Reddan,Sexton,Toner,Bowe,Trimble,Kearney,Payne) we have plenty of time and talent to replace them (Strauss,Cronin,Treacy,Moore,Furlong,Dillane,Molony,Ryan,VDF,Leavy,Stander,Marmion,McGrath,Jackson,Scholes,Ringrose,Olding).

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Post by rodders Thu 03 Mar 2016, 11:18 am

gleesonisgod wrote:
rodders wrote:
gleesonisgod wrote:
rodders wrote:
profitius wrote:Interesting to hear Schmidt say they're in a rebuild phase.

Why is the average age 28 then? Utter rubbish by Schmidt who has turned into another IRFU puppet and seems to have totally lost his nerve after the Argentina game.

Is having an average age of 28 not a good thing? It's generally considered the age when players peak.

Not if you are rebuilding its not. If this is the peak then we're in big trouble over the next few years.

Most of the team will still be as good come the next WC. I really don't think the age of our team is a problem.

Well we don't want them to be as good, we want them to be better. The bulk of the team are as good as they are ever going to be.

If you compare to England who have an average age of 24 then we are in trouble if we want to compete at the top level. Scotland have a younger team too.

I think if you go out with an experienced side then we need to get results, my point is to say we are rebuilding is a bit of spin from Schmidt - that was a very experienced side and fairly old too.
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Post by asoreleftshoulder Thu 03 Mar 2016, 11:36 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
Notch wrote:
He just gave three players their first caps in the hardest game of the Six Nations.

Forced on him by an very long injury list - not by choice.

No new caps would have occurred if he had say McCarthy, SOB and Payne available.

Of course not,he would have waited to bed them in against Italy and Scotland.That's just good selection.

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Post by asoreleftshoulder Thu 03 Mar 2016, 11:47 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
Notch wrote:
theslosty wrote:For all this talk of a poor performance, if the vdF try had counted as it should have we would have had 7 minutes to score against a tiring England side down to 14.

Thems the margins. I was impressed with how we hung in there, but the overall standard of the Six Nations is very low for a variety of reasons- England should have been further ahead but for their own profligacy.

Still, I haven't yet seen us outclassed and thought there's no way we could have won any of our games. We were in those games until the very end. We have the ability to get back to competing for this title in the next season or two.

Only just being beaten by poorish sides is not much of a recommendation

This 6Nations has shown me 2 things:

One the NH has learnt nothing from the WC and is still way behind the SH.

I watch a fair bit of the Aviva and if Eddie Jones gets it right the talent coming through should mean England dominate the next few years.
Ireland do not have the pack to compete - I do not see the replacements for the declining Ross, SOB, Heaslip and you have to assume Best.
McGrath, Henderson, POM are shoo ins but where is the rest of the pack to dominate in the years to come

Well we've completely changed the way we play compared to last year and it's not a case of learning from the SH as Schmidt was implementing this new style at the WC we just ran out of players good enough to compete.
Ross will be replaced by Moore in the short term and Furlong in the long term,Heaslip has Stander,Conan and Murphy (who played very well at 8 v England last year) as possible replacements while SoB has Henry,ToD,VDF and Leavy behind him.There is also very little reason to think SoB is going to decline that quickly,BoD and PoC had injury ravaged periods of there career in their late 20's/early 30's and came back to perform better than ever so dismissing SoB (Healy is in a similar position) is foolish imo.

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Post by Notch Thu 03 Mar 2016, 12:12 pm

I don't think Ireland will dominate in years to come, but 15 against 15 I don't see us getting smashed off the park. They only have a few weeks before every Six Nations to get the players from all the different clubs on the same page; my biggest fear over England dominating is if they start picking Saracens players en masse. The easiest way to avoid being killed by the sheer lack of preparation time is to build your selection around one successful club side and thats exactly why Gatland and Schmidt have both done that in the past, and thats exactly why Ireland and Wales have won more than England.

As for the NH not learning from the RWC, I agree. We're still stubbornly keeping on with a Winter/Spring Six Nations and breaking up the test windows scattered through a over-congested club season. if it was just Ireland who concluded that defence wins championships and if it was just Ireland who were making basic errors like Kearneys pass to McCloskey you would conclude that it was an Irish problem. But it's every team, and every winner every year is the side with the tightest defence; you say that being 'just better' than a few other poor teams is no recommendation and I fully agree with you but that is the nature of the Six Nations. That is the kind of rugby it encourages. It does not help us prepare to face the best, never mind be the best. It is pointless, anachronistic, sterile and in desperate need of fundamental changes. You'll get a few very good one-off performances but the season isn't structured to allow coaches to be ambitious in their game plans or to allow players enough training and pitch time together to build a rapport.

We have to end the tyranny of our club over country calendar to close the gap with the SH. And we have to kill the golden goose. Otherwise our international teams will continue to be conservative and under skilled.
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Post by Notch Thu 03 Mar 2016, 12:14 pm

asoreleftshoulder wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
Notch wrote:
He just gave three players their first caps in the hardest game of the Six Nations.

Forced on him by an very long injury list - not by choice.

No new caps would have occurred if he had say McCarthy, SOB and Payne available.

Of course not,he would have waited to bed them in against Italy and Scotland.That's just good selection.

What about if he had, say, Dave Foley, Tommy O'Donnell and Keith Earls available?
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Post by Sin é Thu 03 Mar 2016, 12:20 pm

Very impressive display of skills yesterday for this try in Clongowes v Roscrea (leinster schools cup). The Roscrea prop's handling is particularly impressive and what about the pace of the hooker.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXhNw-GYPSM
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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 03 Mar 2016, 2:17 pm

asoreleftshoulder wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
Notch wrote:
He just gave three players their first caps in the hardest game of the Six Nations.

Forced on him by an very long injury list - not by choice.

No new caps would have occurred if he had say McCarthy, SOB and Payne available.

Of course not,he would have waited to bed them in against Italy and Scotland.That's just good selection.

I wish I could believe that - I dont

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Post by asoreleftshoulder Thu 03 Mar 2016, 2:20 pm

Well he is on record after the French game as saying that with the chance of winning the championship almost gone that we'd see changes.If he then didn't actually make changes he would have left himself wide open to criticism.

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Post by Golden Thu 03 Mar 2016, 3:53 pm

Sin é wrote:Very impressive display of skills yesterday for this try in Clongowes v Roscrea (leinster schools cup). The Roscrea prop's handling is particularly impressive and what about the pace of the hooker.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXhNw-GYPSM

The skills in the Leinster senior cup is at an all time high. Some of the handling/passing from the likes of Michaels and Belvo have been hugely impressive.

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Post by Tattie Scones RRN Thu 03 Mar 2016, 4:41 pm

Afternoon Chaps

I did mention this on the previous thread before it got locked but a few of us are heading over for the match and at present, the cheapest ticket price on all the websites is around the £220 mark.

Which is diabolical really.

Does anyone have tickets for sale at a more realistic price.

If not, what are the touts likely to be selling for right up to kick off?

Cheers and good luck (against Italy anyway).

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Post by profitius Thu 03 Mar 2016, 7:46 pm

asoreleftshoulder wrote:
Well we've completely changed the way we play compared to last year and it's not a case of learning from the SH as Schmidt was implementing this new style at the WC we just ran out of players good enough to compete.
Ross will be replaced by Moore in the short term and Furlong in the long term,Heaslip has Stander,Conan and Murphy (who played very well at 8 v England last year) as possible replacements while SoB has Henry,ToD,VDF and Leavy behind him.There is also very little reason to think SoB is going to decline that quickly,BoD and PoC had injury ravaged periods of there career in their late 20's/early 30's and came back to perform better than ever so dismissing SoB (Healy is in a similar position) is foolish imo.


New style or was it a result of the new center combination because the centers were providing most spark.

Bernard Jackson said its the same style as usual. http://www.newstalk.com/podcasts/Monday_Rewind/Monday_Rewind/127946/Rob_Kearney_Bernard_Jackman_on_rugby_Football_chat
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Post by asoreleftshoulder Thu 03 Mar 2016, 8:12 pm

profitius wrote:
asoreleftshoulder wrote:
Well we've completely changed the way we play compared to last year and it's not a case of learning from the SH as Schmidt was implementing this new style at the WC we just ran out of players good enough to compete.
Ross will be replaced by Moore in the short term and Furlong in the long term,Heaslip has Stander,Conan and Murphy (who played very well at 8 v England last year) as possible replacements while SoB has Henry,ToD,VDF and Leavy behind him.There is also very little reason to think SoB is going to decline that quickly,BoD and PoC had injury ravaged periods of there career in their late 20's/early 30's and came back to perform better than ever so dismissing SoB (Healy is in a similar position) is foolish imo.


New style or was it a result of the new center combination because the centers were providing most spark.

Bernard Jackson said its the same style as usual. http://www.newstalk.com/podcasts/Monday_Rewind/Monday_Rewind/127946/Rob_Kearney_Bernard_Jackman_on_rugby_Football_chat

It's a new style compared to the game we were playing this time last year,how anybody can question that when you see the way we kept the ball in hand v France in really bad conditions is beyond me.Last year we would have kicked to contest constantly in that game and it was Henshaw/Payne playing so it has nothing to do with the centre combination.

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Post by eirebilly Fri 04 Mar 2016, 9:22 am

asoreleftshoulder wrote:


Well we've completely changed the way we play compared to last year and it's not a case of learning from the SH as Schmidt was implementing this new style at the WC we just ran out of players good enough to compete.
Ross will be replaced by Moore in the short term and Furlong in the long term,Heaslip has Stander,Conan and Murphy (who played very well at 8 v England last year) as possible replacements while SoB has Henry,ToD,VDF and Leavy behind him.There is also very little reason to think SoB is going to decline that quickly,BoD and PoC had injury ravaged periods of there career in their late 20's/early 30's and came back to perform better than ever so dismissing SoB (Healy is in a similar position) is foolish imo.

If Ireland had run out of players that were good enough to compete then surely Schmidt, as a great coach, should have realised this and implemented a game plan to suit the players he had available?
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