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Scotland 6 Nations Thread

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Post by Highland Shaun Sun 01 Dec 2019, 11:26 pm

First topic message reminder :

With the 6N fast approaching, I thought I'd be the first to start a thread for it, my team being Scotland because its my nationality lol.

First of all, we know that Danny Wilson won't be coaching as he's off to coach Glasgow plus there are rumours of Matt Taylor the assistant going with Rennie to Australia so that leaves a couple of vacancies available, hopefully after the 6N, the main head coach one will be available too, which I would suspect Richard Cockerill would be the outright fav for, but that's a topic for after the 6N.

So, who would you like to see be in our 6N squad, are there any new caps that are likely, are there any players possibly getting recalls or would we likely see any younger players get a shot.

This is the place to discuss so go ahead 😉.

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Post by RDW Mon 10 Feb 2020, 4:18 pm

EWT Spoons wrote:Whilst it's a good statement, it is getting embarrassing for all parties that this is constantly being done in public.  Surely it would make far more sense for them to talk to each other, rather than putting statements out in the media.

Yeah I hope that's the end of the official statements. There's no suggestion he's going to try and set up a meeting with Finn though so it's still stalemate.

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Post by jimbopip Mon 10 Feb 2020, 4:21 pm

The interesting thing is he really sets it out as the players have lots of input into the group culture and that Finn is the outlier there.
Where this is smart is that if none of the players come out and contradict him publicly then it must be true. Finn has made vague comments about others being in his camp but unless people start standing up for him then it's game set and match Toonie.
That is if you look at this whole affair as a zero-sum ego clash. If however, everything Toonie says is true and it can now be checked then Finn is obviously a disruptive element and we are better off without him. If all Toonie's statement are from the Boris-Trunmp school of rhetoric then he will be exposed sooner or later and will have to go. Everything Toonie says there chimes with his professed admiration for the John Wooden school of management and seems consistent with everything we know of him. Finn on the other hand.  picard  

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Post by tigertattie Mon 10 Feb 2020, 4:35 pm

RDW wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:Whilst it's a good statement, it is getting embarrassing for all parties that this is constantly being done in public.  Surely it would make far more sense for them to talk to each other, rather than putting statements out in the media.

Yeah I hope that's the end of the official statements. There's no suggestion he's going to try and set up a meeting with Finn though so it's still stalemate.

Catch 22

Everyone has been shouting at the SRU for lack of transparency on this issue.

It still very much looks like Finn was naughty, missed training, got punished. Was told he could say in camp and knuckle down and follow the rules, he chose not to and left to go back to France.

Unconfirmed reports say Finn has an issue with drinking. Finn himself has said (although there are deeper lying issues) the straw that broke the camel’s back was that he wanted a drink but a rule had been set that it wasn’t allowed.

I think the whole thing is an embarrassment to Finn and by association, the SRU. The SRU have been rather accommodating and decent by saying to the press very very little (which is what has peoples backs up) but they are being forced to make a comment to clear things up. The SRU are trying not to air what is Finn's dirty laundry in public and trying to keep it private. As Finn has called them out in a newspaper article, they have had to respond.

For me this is still Finn being the root cause of the matter. He's either being a petulant thorn in the side or he has a genuine health issue around alcohol consumption.

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Post by R!skysports Mon 10 Feb 2020, 4:43 pm

EWT Spoons wrote:Whilst it's a good statement, it is getting embarrassing for all parties that this is constantly being done in public.  Surely it would make far more sense for them to talk to each other, rather than putting statements out in the media.

Again is seems the blame is squarely on Finn, he went public first and it seems that he walked out after 3 hours of conversation.


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Post by BigGee Mon 10 Feb 2020, 4:47 pm

R!skysports wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:Whilst it's a good statement, it is getting embarrassing for all parties that this is constantly being done in public.  Surely it would make far more sense for them to talk to each other, rather than putting statements out in the media.

Again is seems the blame is squarely on Finn, he went public first and it seems that he walked out after 3 hours of conversation.



I agree with that, Toonie and the SRU had the right of reply after Finn went public with his interview. I don't know who was advising him about thatk, but I don't think they have done a very good job.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/51441642

Here is a slightly more informal version of the statement that he gave in an inteview with Tom English

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Post by NeilyBroon Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:07 pm

Its a good statement from Toonie but again, something doesnt feel right.

Yes Finn has blame in this. No, no other players have come out and said anything. If there was a culture issue at the WC, and presumably last 6Ns, despite having a great ethos in the 2 years prior to Toonie, the question for me is why?

I dont think its all coincidence. When the SRU want to play dumb they do it very well. As I said before if players are unhappy theyre unlikely to come forward because most are in very droppable positions. It is their career too, lets not forget that. Theyd stand to have more to lose than Finn.
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Post by TheMildlyFranticLlama Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:21 pm

R!skysports wrote:Telling that almost no player has come in to support Finn from the squad or even around the group - even really in passing

More this plays out I think it seems Finn in in the wrong

I don’t think it’s telling at all risky, as others have said the majority of the squad are either SRU employees or those that aren’t are largely trying to cement their places in the squad. They have absolutely nothing to gain and everything to lose by commenting publicly regardless of whether they entirely agree with Finn.

That said, I do agree it was a good statement from Dodson’s boy

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Post by R!skysports Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:32 pm

NeilyBroon wrote:Its a good statement from Toonie but again, something doesnt feel right.

Yes Finn has blame in this. No, no other players have come out and said anything. If there was a culture issue at the WC, and presumably last 6Ns, despite having a great ethos in the 2 years prior to Toonie, the question for me is why?

I dont think its all coincidence. When the SRU want to play dumb they do it very well. As I said before if players are unhappy theyre unlikely to come forward because most are in very droppable positions. It is their career too, lets not forget that. Theyd stand to have more to lose than Finn.

BUT and this is my opinion

we are basing ALL the direst and on the word of Finn

No other player has said anything close to that and bearing in mind we have had Barcley, Seymore, and Greig all retiring from international, and they have not implied that there is an issue or if Townsend has lost the dressing room

It seems to be the Finn show and no-one else


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Post by R!skysports Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:35 pm

TheMildlyFranticLlama wrote:
R!skysports wrote:Telling that almost no player has come in to support Finn from the squad or even around the group - even really in passing

More this plays out I think it seems Finn in in the wrong

I don’t think it’s telling at all risky, as others have said the majority of the squad are either SRU employees or those that aren’t are largely trying to cement their places in the squad. They have absolutely nothing to gain and everything to lose by commenting publicly regardless of whether they entirely agree with Finn.

That said, I do agree it was a good statement from Dodson’s boy

But all the players that have retired and all backed Townsend or been very positive in support of him

So I understand current players not wanting to say anything, but the fact that no-one at all has said this in the last 2 years is more telling

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Post by 123456789. Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:41 pm

It could all be a bit of a c*ck up to borrow some of the phrasing from an earlier post.

Finn Russell was told he would not be involved for England. It was then he gave his reveal all interview. That it took so long suggests he thought something concrete had changed. So he said his piece. Thinking he wouldn't be part of the Six Nations at all. The journalist then writes his article for maximum exposure. Finn asks that it is not released until the Sunday, to avoid distracting the players.

After a good team performance and from Hastings, Townsend decides to stick with the settled side for a game only six days away. Allows him to really ram the point home to Russell. In his post-match interview he extends an olive branch for Russell. Saying openly that he wants to him back involved.

Finn's interview hits the front pages the next day. Digging a massive hole from himself. Townsend comes out and gives his reply. Again really shows how poorly this has all been dealt with from a communication point of view. Russell wasn't told about the new drinking policy. Instead of telling Russell that he was suspended for two games, Townsend sent him a nebulous text.After the Ireland game, Townsend said he still would not be involved, rather than telling him when he would be involved but only after the following week because he was happy with the performance and wanted to keep a settled side.

It would have been far more grown-up from all involved if a memo had been sent out well in advance outlining the new policy with regard to booze in the Scotland camp. When he failed to adhere he should have been fined. When he missed training it would have been better if Russell had been told that he would not be considered (suspended) for the following match and they wanted him to be around to help ease him back in for England. But that if he was needed in Paris for logistical reasons he wouldn't be eligible until the third round given the amount of training he would have missed by that point. If Russell showed the infantile behaviour he has anyway the SRU could have stated early on his exact indiscretions and the exact punishment.

At the moment there's lots of grown men behaving in a really pathetic, petty way trying to play the victim. The real losers are the supporters, who let's face it, have put up with more than their fair share of sh!t over the years. People have spent good money to watch these games over the years. Have invested their hard earned money into the SRU to see it spaffed away on unnecessary fines and ridiculous salaries.

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Post by R!skysports Mon 10 Feb 2020, 5:49 pm

123456789. wrote:It could all be a bit of a c*ck up to borrow some of the phrasing from an earlier post.

Finn Russell was told he would not be involved for England. It was then he gave his reveal all interview. That it took so long suggests he thought something concrete had changed. So he said his piece. Thinking he wouldn't be part of the Six Nations at all. The journalist then writes his article for maximum exposure. Finn asks that it is not released until the Sunday, to avoid distracting the players.

After a good team performance and from Hastings, Townsend decides to stick with the settled side for a game only six days away. Allows him to really ram the point home to Russell. In his post-match interview he extends an olive branch for Russell. Saying openly that he wants to him back involved.

Finn's interview hits the front pages the next day. Digging a massive hole from himself. Townsend comes out and gives his reply. Again really shows how poorly this has all been dealt with from a communication point of view. Russell wasn't told about the new drinking policy. Instead of telling Russell that he was suspended for two games, Townsend sent him a nebulous text.After the Ireland game, Townsend said he still would not be involved, rather than telling him when he would be involved but only after the following week because he was happy with the performance and wanted to keep a settled side.

It would have been far more grown-up from all involved if a memo had been sent out well in advance outlining the new policy with regard to booze in the Scotland camp. When he failed to adhere he should have been fined. When he missed training it would have been better if Russell had been told that he would not be considered (suspended) for the following match and they wanted him to be around to help ease him back in for England. But that if he was needed in Paris for logistical reasons he wouldn't be eligible until the third round given the amount of training he would have missed by that point. If Russell showed the infantile behaviour he has anyway the SRU could have stated early on his exact indiscretions and the exact punishment.

At the moment there's lots of grown men behaving in a really pathetic, petty way trying to play the victim. The real losers are the supporters, who let's face it, have put up with more than their fair share of sh!t over the years. People have spent good money to watch these games over the years. Have invested their hard earned money into the SRU to see it spaffed away on unnecessary fines and ridiculous salaries.

Could you show where all this speculation about what happened came from? I have not seen any of this and it seems to me people are making up narrative to give Finn the beneficent of the doubt?

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Post by jimbopip Mon 10 Feb 2020, 6:54 pm

I'm with Risky on this one.

Toonie clearly states that at least one player misbehaved in japan and this affected the performance of the team.
He then states that the team drew up new guidelines.
The team , or at least those in a position to do so, challenged Finn about his drinking.
Toonie and Finn had a three hour conversation about expected standards of behaviour.
Finn phoned his parents to come and collect him.
Finn missed training.
Toonie informed him that he had made himself unavailable for the Ireland game.
Finn went home to Paris.
Finn gave an interview to Mark Palmer. Finn blamed a lack of relationship with Toonie and also said that he wanted a night out after each game and not having to wait a week until after the England game, regardless of what the rest of the squad had agreed.
Toonie then made a statement where he said the players had responded to events in Japan by drawing up a set of guidelines for expected behaviour. Finn has been told that he is welcome in the squad but if he wants to be in the squad he buys into the culture just like everyone else.
Finn hasn't responded yet. The world holds its breath. Actually it doesn't.

In my opinion the worst thing that could happen would be for the bigwigs to sack Toonie and a new coach to come in and say, "Clean slate. Everybody starts from scratch." Because although this may get Finn back in the squad it would probably infuriate and antagonise a fair proportion of the players. At the very least there would be an attitude of, "Why should I toe the line when he gets away with that?".

Secondly, rugby has been, and always should be about certain core values and pandering to someone because they are the "superstar" in the team ( even when it means corroding the group dynamic) is not the sort of behaviour we should be modelling to children coming into the game.

I am a huge fan of the things Dancer does on a rugby field: I am not impressed by the things I am finding out about him this week.

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Post by 123456789. Mon 10 Feb 2020, 6:57 pm

R!skysports wrote:
123456789. wrote:It could all be a bit of a c*ck up to borrow some of the phrasing from an earlier post.

Finn Russell was told he would not be involved for England. It was then he gave his reveal all interview. That it took so long suggests he thought something concrete had changed. So he said his piece. Thinking he wouldn't be part of the Six Nations at all. The journalist then writes his article for maximum exposure. Finn asks that it is not released until the Sunday, to avoid distracting the players.

After a good team performance and from Hastings, Townsend decides to stick with the settled side for a game only six days away. Allows him to really ram the point home to Russell. In his post-match interview he extends an olive branch for Russell. Saying openly that he wants to him back involved.

Finn's interview hits the front pages the next day. Digging a massive hole from himself. Townsend comes out and gives his reply. Again really shows how poorly this has all been dealt with from a communication point of view. Russell wasn't told about the new drinking policy. Instead of telling Russell that he was suspended for two games, Townsend sent him a nebulous text.After the Ireland game, Townsend said he still would not be involved, rather than telling him when he would be involved but only after the following week because he was happy with the performance and wanted to keep a settled side.

It would have been far more grown-up from all involved if a memo had been sent out well in advance outlining the new policy with regard to booze in the Scotland camp. When he failed to adhere he should have been fined. When he missed training it would have been better if Russell had been told that he would not be considered (suspended) for the following match and they wanted him to be around to help ease him back in for England. But that if he was needed in Paris for logistical reasons he wouldn't be eligible until the third round given the amount of training he would have missed by that point. If Russell showed the infantile behaviour he has anyway the SRU could have stated early on his exact indiscretions and the exact punishment.

At the moment there's lots of grown men behaving in a really pathetic, petty way trying to play the victim. The real losers are the supporters, who let's face it, have put up with more than their fair share of sh!t over the years. People have spent good money to watch these games over the years. Have invested their hard earned money into the SRU to see it spaffed away on unnecessary fines and ridiculous salaries.

Could you show where all this speculation about what happened came from? I have not seen any of this and it seems to me people are making up narrative to give Finn the beneficent of the doubt?

- Was in the interview that Finn Russell gave and the statements that Townsend has made in the mean time, and in the tweets from Mark Palmer. I'm not giving Russell the benefit of the doubt. I think he's an idiot. I just think Townsend is equally to blame and has handled it poorly. We need all the players we've got. We can't afford to lose players like Russell.
- This is the quote on the booze policy. This could and should have been discussed before and distributed.
The Sunday Times wrote: Russell is part of Scotland’s leadership group, but in his absence the other members had apparently agreed that after a game, players would be allowed two beers each and that there would be a team night out after the Calcutta Cup match. Russell had “two beers with dinner” and “ordered another one”, which is said not to have sat well with other senior players.

“The players at dinner were like, ‘no more drinking’. These are guys I know well, so I said, ‘what’s the problem, I’ve just played, I just want a couple of beers’ and they said that’s what the leaders had agreed. I’m part of the leaders group, but they’d had the meeting before I got there. I’d not had a say. So for me, straight away, it was set up pretty poorly.

- This is what he had to say on the text regarding his walk out
The Sunday Times wrote:“On the Wednesday morning, Gregor sent me a text saying, ‘if you want to go back to Racing, you are free to do that from today. Let me know if you decide to go back.’ For me, that text was, ‘you’re free to do what you want.’ But from then, it’s all been, ‘Finn’s left camp to go back to Racing, Finn’s this, Finn’s that’ when I’d said to Gregor, ‘if you want me here, I’m here. If you don’t, that [France] is where I need to be.’ The way this has all been spun, I’m the guy who left camp, I’m the guy who had the late night drinking session, I’m the guy who’s done this and that. It could have been sorted in-house. I didn’t turn up on the Monday and that was my choice, but since then it’s been just like, ‘see you later Finn’.”

-This is what the Times article said about communication after he left the camp
Russell spent part of the Ireland week on holiday in Dubai, before watching the game in Paris. From Thursday January 23 until late last Sunday he says he had no contact from Townsend or the SRU. Townsend called last Sunday night. “He just said he wasn’t changing anything in the squad for the England week.

- This is Mark Palmer, the journalist's, further explanation
Mark Palmer wrote:
1. From spending a few hours with Finn Russell in midweek, I would vigorously contest any idea he’s skipped off without a backwards glance. The situation is clearly causing him a lot of angst - the frustration and sadness were obvious 1/3
2. On timing, Russell was adamant nothing should be published pre-match. “I feel I have to set the record straight, but have done it during the fallow week so not to disrupt the team’s preparations. I do still want to play for Scotland and I hope Gregor and I can work together. 2/3
3. “I just believe that if we work on the trust aspect, it will help our relationship and the team in the long run.” 3/3

- This is Townsend's post match interview on Saturday covered in the Scrum Magazine, this was before Russell's interview, that he should not have given, came out on the sunday.
Scrum Magazine wrote:
After losing the Calcutta Cup yesterday (Saturday), Townsend was asked about the possibility of Russell returning to win his 50th cap in Rome.

“Yes,” was his answer, before he revealed in similar fashion that he’ll speak to the Racing 92 playmaker this week.

Again asked why Russell didn’t come into contention for the Calcutta Cup clash, Townsend added: “It was important this group stays together for two or three weeks.

“The team has grown over the last few weeks and keeping that cohesion is very important. A big change to that would have distracted….you guys in the build up.”



Last edited by 123456789. on Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:12 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by tigertattie Mon 10 Feb 2020, 6:57 pm

Remember Glove? Before he walked away from us to bask in his fame

His page has a poll. Who is right, Finn or Toonie. With around 400 votes cast, two thirds of folk are team Finn

Just goes to show how much folk will let their judgement be swayed by how they are feeling (they want Toonie out)
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Post by R!skysports Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:20 pm

123456789. wrote:
R!skysports wrote:
123456789. wrote:It could all be a bit of a c*ck up to borrow some of the phrasing from an earlier post.

Finn Russell was told he would not be involved for England. It was then he gave his reveal all interview. That it took so long suggests he thought something concrete had changed. So he said his piece. Thinking he wouldn't be part of the Six Nations at all. The journalist then writes his article for maximum exposure. Finn asks that it is not released until the Sunday, to avoid distracting the players.

After a good team performance and from Hastings, Townsend decides to stick with the settled side for a game only six days away. Allows him to really ram the point home to Russell. In his post-match interview he extends an olive branch for Russell. Saying openly that he wants to him back involved.

Finn's interview hits the front pages the next day. Digging a massive hole from himself. Townsend comes out and gives his reply. Again really shows how poorly this has all been dealt with from a communication point of view. Russell wasn't told about the new drinking policy. Instead of telling Russell that he was suspended for two games, Townsend sent him a nebulous text.After the Ireland game, Townsend said he still would not be involved, rather than telling him when he would be involved but only after the following week because he was happy with the performance and wanted to keep a settled side.

It would have been far more grown-up from all involved if a memo had been sent out well in advance outlining the new policy with regard to booze in the Scotland camp. When he failed to adhere he should have been fined. When he missed training it would have been better if Russell had been told that he would not be considered (suspended) for the following match and they wanted him to be around to help ease him back in for England. But that if he was needed in Paris for logistical reasons he wouldn't be eligible until the third round given the amount of training he would have missed by that point. If Russell showed the infantile behaviour he has anyway the SRU could have stated early on his exact indiscretions and the exact punishment.

At the moment there's lots of grown men behaving in a really pathetic, petty way trying to play the victim. The real losers are the supporters, who let's face it, have put up with more than their fair share of sh!t over the years. People have spent good money to watch these games over the years. Have invested their hard earned money into the SRU to see it spaffed away on unnecessary fines and ridiculous salaries.

Could you show where all this speculation about what happened came from? I have not seen any of this and it seems to me people are making up narrative to give Finn the beneficent of the doubt?

- Was in the interview that Finn Russell gave and the statements that Townsend has made in the mean time, and in the tweets from Mark Palmer. I'm not giving Russell the benefit of the doubt. I think he's an idiot. I just think Townsend is equally to blame and has handled it poorly. We need all the players we've got. We can't afford to lose players like Russell.
- This is the quote on the booze policy. This could and should have been discussed before and distributed.
The Sunday Times wrote: Russell is part of Scotland’s leadership group, but in his absence the other members had apparently agreed that after a game, players would be allowed two beers each and that there would be a team night out after the Calcutta Cup match. Russell had “two beers with dinner” and “ordered another one”, which is said not to have sat well with other senior players.

“The players at dinner were like, ‘no more drinking’. These are guys I know well, so I said, ‘what’s the problem, I’ve just played, I just want a couple of beers’ and they said that’s what the leaders had agreed. I’m part of the leaders group, but they’d had the meeting before I got there. I’d not had a say. So for me, straight away, it was set up pretty poorly.

- This is what he had to say on the text regarding his walk out
The Sunday Times wrote:“On the Wednesday morning, Gregor sent me a text saying, ‘if you want to go back to Racing, you are free to do that from today. Let me know if you decide to go back.’ For me, that text was, ‘you’re free to do what you want.’ But from then, it’s all been, ‘Finn’s left camp to go back to Racing, Finn’s this, Finn’s that’ when I’d said to Gregor, ‘if you want me here, I’m here. If you don’t, that [France] is where I need to be.’ The way this has all been spun, I’m the guy who left camp, I’m the guy who had the late night drinking session, I’m the guy who’s done this and that. It could have been sorted in-house. I didn’t turn up on the Monday and that was my choice, but since then it’s been just like, ‘see you later Finn’.”

-This is what the Times article said about communication after he left the camp
Russell spent part of the Ireland week on holiday in Dubai, before watching the game in Paris. From Thursday January 23 until late last Sunday he says he had no contact from Townsend or the SRU. Townsend called last Sunday night. “He just said he wasn’t changing anything in the squad for the England week.

- This is Mark Palmer, the journalist's, further explanation
Mark Palmer wrote:
1. From spending a few hours with Finn Russell in midweek, I would vigorously contest any idea he’s skipped off without a backwards glance. The situation is clearly causing him a lot of angst - the frustration and sadness were obvious 1/3
2. On timing, Russell was adamant nothing should be published pre-match. “I feel I have to set the record straight, but have done it during the fallow week so not to disrupt the team’s preparations. I do still want to play for Scotland and I hope Gregor and I can work together. 2/3
3. “I just believe that if we work on the trust aspect, it will help our relationship and the team in the long run.” 3/3

- This is Townsend's post match interview on Saturday covered in the Scrum Magazine, this was before Russell's interview, that he should not have given, came out on the sunday.
Scrum Magazine wrote:
After losing the Calcutta Cup yesterday (Saturday), Townsend was asked about the possibility of Russell returning to win his 50th cap in Rome.

“Yes,” was his answer, before he revealed in similar fashion that he’ll speak to the Racing 92 playmaker this week.

Again asked why Russell didn’t come into contention for the Calcutta Cup clash, Townsend added: “It was important this group stays together for two or three weeks.

“The team has grown over the last few weeks and keeping that cohesion is very important. A big change to that would have distracted….you guys in the build up.”


SO in essence all (apart for the final part) is Finn's side of it?


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Post by 123456789. Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:25 pm

R!skysports wrote:
123456789. wrote:
R!skysports wrote:
123456789. wrote:It could all be a bit of a c*ck up to borrow some of the phrasing from an earlier post.

Finn Russell was told he would not be involved for England. It was then he gave his reveal all interview. That it took so long suggests he thought something concrete had changed. So he said his piece. Thinking he wouldn't be part of the Six Nations at all. The journalist then writes his article for maximum exposure. Finn asks that it is not released until the Sunday, to avoid distracting the players.

After a good team performance and from Hastings, Townsend decides to stick with the settled side for a game only six days away. Allows him to really ram the point home to Russell. In his post-match interview he extends an olive branch for Russell. Saying openly that he wants to him back involved.

Finn's interview hits the front pages the next day. Digging a massive hole from himself. Townsend comes out and gives his reply. Again really shows how poorly this has all been dealt with from a communication point of view. Russell wasn't told about the new drinking policy. Instead of telling Russell that he was suspended for two games, Townsend sent him a nebulous text.After the Ireland game, Townsend said he still would not be involved, rather than telling him when he would be involved but only after the following week because he was happy with the performance and wanted to keep a settled side.

It would have been far more grown-up from all involved if a memo had been sent out well in advance outlining the new policy with regard to booze in the Scotland camp. When he failed to adhere he should have been fined. When he missed training it would have been better if Russell had been told that he would not be considered (suspended) for the following match and they wanted him to be around to help ease him back in for England. But that if he was needed in Paris for logistical reasons he wouldn't be eligible until the third round given the amount of training he would have missed by that point. If Russell showed the infantile behaviour he has anyway the SRU could have stated early on his exact indiscretions and the exact punishment.

At the moment there's lots of grown men behaving in a really pathetic, petty way trying to play the victim. The real losers are the supporters, who let's face it, have put up with more than their fair share of sh!t over the years. People have spent good money to watch these games over the years. Have invested their hard earned money into the SRU to see it spaffed away on unnecessary fines and ridiculous salaries.

Could you show where all this speculation about what happened came from? I have not seen any of this and it seems to me people are making up narrative to give Finn the beneficent of the doubt?

- Was in the interview that Finn Russell gave and the statements that Townsend has made in the mean time, and in the tweets from Mark Palmer. I'm not giving Russell the benefit of the doubt. I think he's an idiot. I just think Townsend is equally to blame and has handled it poorly. We need all the players we've got. We can't afford to lose players like Russell.
- This is the quote on the booze policy. This could and should have been discussed before and distributed.
The Sunday Times wrote: Russell is part of Scotland’s leadership group, but in his absence the other members had apparently agreed that after a game, players would be allowed two beers each and that there would be a team night out after the Calcutta Cup match. Russell had “two beers with dinner” and “ordered another one”, which is said not to have sat well with other senior players.

“The players at dinner were like, ‘no more drinking’. These are guys I know well, so I said, ‘what’s the problem, I’ve just played, I just want a couple of beers’ and they said that’s what the leaders had agreed. I’m part of the leaders group, but they’d had the meeting before I got there. I’d not had a say. So for me, straight away, it was set up pretty poorly.

- This is what he had to say on the text regarding his walk out
The Sunday Times wrote:“On the Wednesday morning, Gregor sent me a text saying, ‘if you want to go back to Racing, you are free to do that from today. Let me know if you decide to go back.’ For me, that text was, ‘you’re free to do what you want.’ But from then, it’s all been, ‘Finn’s left camp to go back to Racing, Finn’s this, Finn’s that’ when I’d said to Gregor, ‘if you want me here, I’m here. If you don’t, that [France] is where I need to be.’ The way this has all been spun, I’m the guy who left camp, I’m the guy who had the late night drinking session, I’m the guy who’s done this and that. It could have been sorted in-house. I didn’t turn up on the Monday and that was my choice, but since then it’s been just like, ‘see you later Finn’.”

-This is what the Times article said about communication after he left the camp
Russell spent part of the Ireland week on holiday in Dubai, before watching the game in Paris. From Thursday January 23 until late last Sunday he says he had no contact from Townsend or the SRU. Townsend called last Sunday night. “He just said he wasn’t changing anything in the squad for the England week.

- This is Mark Palmer, the journalist's, further explanation
Mark Palmer wrote:
1. From spending a few hours with Finn Russell in midweek, I would vigorously contest any idea he’s skipped off without a backwards glance. The situation is clearly causing him a lot of angst - the frustration and sadness were obvious 1/3
2. On timing, Russell was adamant nothing should be published pre-match. “I feel I have to set the record straight, but have done it during the fallow week so not to disrupt the team’s preparations. I do still want to play for Scotland and I hope Gregor and I can work together. 2/3
3. “I just believe that if we work on the trust aspect, it will help our relationship and the team in the long run.” 3/3

- This is Townsend's post match interview on Saturday covered in the Scrum Magazine, this was before Russell's interview, that he should not have given, came out on the sunday.
Scrum Magazine wrote:
After losing the Calcutta Cup yesterday (Saturday), Townsend was asked about the possibility of Russell returning to win his 50th cap in Rome.

“Yes,” was his answer, before he revealed in similar fashion that he’ll speak to the Racing 92 playmaker this week.

Again asked why Russell didn’t come into contention for the Calcutta Cup clash, Townsend added: “It was important this group stays together for two or three weeks.

“The team has grown over the last few weeks and keeping that cohesion is very important. A big change to that would have distracted….you guys in the build up.”


SO in essence all (apart for the final part) is Finn's side of it?


Pretty much, but from what I can see at no point has Townsend contradicted anything specific that Russell has said. There's two sides to this story it would be stupid not to look into the fullest account given by either of them. Has Townsend said that Russell received the standards earlier? Or further explained the texts?

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Post by RDW Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:28 pm

Can we stop quoting such long threads?? Just reply to the person by name in a new post. Thanks.

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Post by SecretFly Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:33 pm

RDW wrote:Can we stop quoting such long threads?? Just reply to the person by name in a new post. Thanks.

Don't you start! I only had two drinks!

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Post by Heaf Mon 10 Feb 2020, 7:37 pm

SecretFly wrote:
RDW wrote:Can we stop quoting such long threads?? Just reply to the person by name in a new post. Thanks.

Don't you start!  I only had two drinks!  

Don't be late tomorrow ...

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Post by Eejit Mon 10 Feb 2020, 8:21 pm

On a different subject I think Hastings has done ok so far. He played alright against Ireland and conditions against England were so bad I think it’s best to just move on. Hoping he has an absolute stormer against Italy though if he was to get crocked we’d be in a spot of bother

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Post by tigertattie Mon 10 Feb 2020, 8:33 pm

I just don’t get how anyone can take Finn’s side on this.

Unless we’re being treated to a coverup of watergate proportions, everything is pointing to Finn being an utter douche
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Post by BigGee Mon 10 Feb 2020, 8:35 pm

That is my feeling as well!

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Post by 123456789. Mon 10 Feb 2020, 9:01 pm

I think he's been an idiot, I think he's got it wrong, I think he's lost his way. But Townsend has managed it poorly.

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Post by RDW Mon 10 Feb 2020, 10:10 pm

https://www.rugbypass.com/news/i-just-want-him-back-maitland-weighs-in-on-russell-v-townsend-feud

Maitland the only squad member to speak out so far. Nothing overly controversial.

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Post by NeilyBroon Mon 10 Feb 2020, 10:40 pm

Im with numbers on this. It annoys me that it has to be youre on either side. Finn has been a tw*t but Toonie has been a poor manager prior to and during this. I dont advocate Finn's immediate return to the team, in fact I dont think he'd have made any difference for either game or Toonie to be sacked because of this incident, believe me I think there are plenty of reasons to sack toonie looking at the last 18 months. One player having a strop isnt the most pressing.

Its possible to believe both parties are at fault and that this situation has arisen when it may not have had Cotter or another reputable coach been in charge.

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Post by bsando Tue 11 Feb 2020, 5:00 am

https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-glaringly-obvious-problem-in-scotlands-game-plan-that-has-to-stop

I believe most of this article to be correct. That probably places a lot of blame on Danny Wilson as well as Townsend for renewed white line fever. I had no idea our attacking maul was quite as bad as this.

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Post by TJ Tue 11 Feb 2020, 7:52 am

I see Finn as a man pushed beyond what he can cope with by crap management and tactics.. Other players may have been more resilient for sure but I lay the blame firmly at Townsend feet.

We know Townsend is a crap coach and we know he is insisting on the wrong tactics and results have been bad under him

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Post by RDW Tue 11 Feb 2020, 8:07 am

bsando wrote:https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-glaringly-obvious-problem-in-scotlands-game-plan-that-has-to-stop

I believe most of this article to be correct. That probably places a lot of blame on Danny Wilson as well as Townsend for renewed white line fever. I had no idea our attacking maul was quite as bad as this.

Wilson has not been a good appointment - our lineout and mauls have been crap under his watch, his main areas of responsibility.

We're yet to see all these innovative ideas Toonie told us he would be bringing!

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 11 Feb 2020, 8:27 am

I don't rate Toonie that highly as an international coach (at Glasgow he was or appeared to be very good) and I don't think he should have gotten the role in the way he did, but other than releasing a statement (rather than just talking to Finn) I don't see that he's done much wrong in this thing.

From both parties it sounds like it was the players who agreed this policy and not Toonie, and even though Finn didn't have his say, I assume there must be some form of majority who would have wanted it.  He was told about it when it became pertinent (I'm sure up until then they had other things to talk about, rather than the drink policy) and instead of accepting it and understanding that's what the team felt was the right course of action, he threw his toys out the pram and had a tantrum.

Finn's a great player, undoubtably, but some of the rumblings from the squad is that they think he's been a dick about the whole thing and I think the attention/praise has gone to his head.  If he's going to have a negative impact on the squad overall, then it's probably for the best he stays away for now.

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Post by TJ Tue 11 Feb 2020, 8:56 am

The drinking is not the issue - thats a smokescreen. The issue is Townsends management and tactics

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:08 am

TJ wrote:The drinking is not the issue - thats a smokescreen.  The issue is Townsends management and tactics

Well really the issue is Finn and his issue with Townsend's management/tactics.

Other players think he's been an idiot.

He's not getting his own way, so is having a tantrum.

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Post by LondonTiger Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:10 am

There can of course be two issues:

Townsend's incompetence
Russell's diva like behaviour

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:14 am

Absolutely, but no other player has walked away from the team because of it.

I get the SRU employee argument, but look at the like of Maitland, he could easily walk away without any issues, or speak out, but he hasn't.

Hogg could as well, but he wanted to be captain

I don't think Toonie has done a good job as Scotland coach, but the only person who seems to have an issue with him is Finn.

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Post by George Carlin Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:21 am

The alternative reading is that we're all expecting a bit too much from young lads with their odd shaped balls. It's the same query which comes up all the time - why do we expect our athletes to be anything more than just good athletes? They aren't carefully nuanced, Machievellian diplomats. There are a lot of prima donnas in rugby now - Russell is just one of them.

Reminds me of Jonathan Watson's Frank MacAvennie during their usual Only An Excuse one year: "The only thing I am guilty of is Daft Boyness".
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Post by TJ Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:24 am


Other players think he's been an idiot.

He's not getting his own way, so is having a tantrum.

I do not see a tantrum here and other players have been silent. Leaving the interview untill the least damaging time is not a tantrum.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:25 am

Not turning up to training after being told by senior players that he was breaking team rules seems to be a bit tantrumy. Even Phillips turned up to wales training drunk rather than just go AWOL!

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:28 am

TJ wrote:

Other players think he's been an idiot.

He's not getting his own way, so is having a tantrum.

I do not see a tantrum here and other players have been silent.  Leaving the interview untill the least damaging time is not a tantrum.

In the media they have, privately they've not been as diplomatic.

Walking out from the team and demanding everything changes to suit him before he would be willing to return, is a tantrum.

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Post by R!skysports Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:37 am

I think we have to seperate the two issues

Townsends tactics and Finns relationship

They are separate

If you look at the situation with Finn on its own, it looks like it is 99.9% Finns fault.

No other player has come forward to defend him. No other player has said they have issues with Townsend. They have played with more passion with Finn gone. Retired players have not defended Finn or said that their is an issue with Townsend or him losing the dressing room

This is ALL about Finn

The fact that he is a great player (although for Scotland I would dispute that) should not mean he gets a pass that others would not. This is part of th problem with 'Celebrity culture' We excuse everything just because they are good / make money etc


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Post by SecretFly Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:42 am

EWT Spoons wrote:Absolutely, but no other player has walked away from the team because of it.

.

Well, nothing was directly pointed at them.  They weren't under the coaching focus.  It was Finn himself.  So maybe they are just keeping their heads down and mostly deciding it has nothing to do with them  - that it's a Townsend v Russell fight.

But for arguments sake let's say Maitland finds himself ordered into a room by Townsend where in no uncertain terms he is told to keep his mouth shut, not to try to be intimating support for Russell, not to be getting involved in administration issues that has nothing to do with him, etc etc.  How might that player feel then?  Then it would be kinda personal, then he might think his coach is over stepping his role and misreading his words etc, etc.

So no need for players to walk unless someone turns focus on them in a negative way.  Because that's what this all stems from - negative feedback directed at certain Russell actions, him reacting to it and then all hell breaking loose.  A personality clash that obviously has been ongoing but a particular spark, a particular accusation, that brought it to a head.  Happens the world over really ever second of every day.  This is magnified in public terms because it is a big sport and famous people involved.  

It's just a major falling out between two human beings, that's kinda all it is.

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Post by RDW Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:42 am

Aye if it was Peter Horne doing this I think everyone would be Team Toonie!

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Post by SecretFly Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:45 am

EWT Spoons wrote:
TJ wrote:

Other players think he's been an idiot.

He's not getting his own way, so is having a tantrum.

I do not see a tantrum here and other players have been silent.  Leaving the interview untill the least damaging time is not a tantrum.

In the media they have, privately they've not been as diplomatic.

Walking out from the team and demanding everything changes to suit him before he would be willing to return, is a tantrum.

It is Not a tantrum!!!!!! mad If you say that again I'll leave 606 forever!

'Hmmmmmm', thinks all other 606ers........

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Post by EWT Spoons Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:52 am

Can you explain then what walking away from the team and demanding things change to suit him is then?

To me that sounds like a child not getting their own way and having a tantrum (don't go!!)

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Post by LondonTiger Tue 11 Feb 2020, 9:54 am

SecretFly wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:
TJ wrote:

Other players think he's been an idiot.

He's not getting his own way, so is having a tantrum.

I do not see a tantrum here and other players have been silent.  Leaving the interview untill the least damaging time is not a tantrum.

In the media they have, privately they've not been as diplomatic.

Walking out from the team and demanding everything changes to suit him before he would be willing to return, is a tantrum.

It is Not a tantrum!!!!!! mad   If you say that again I'll leave 606 forever!

'Hmmmmmm', thinks all other 606ers........

If you leave me now...

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Post by TJ Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:15 am

Spoons - thats not how I saw it at all. He didn't walk away - he was told to go or to buckle down to every demand and to play a game plan we all know does not work


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Post by jimbopip Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:15 am

RDW wrote:Aye if it was Peter Horne doing this I think everyone would be Team Toonie!

So will Furra Linee or Meatball be the back up 10 in Italy?

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Post by R!skysports Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:19 am

SecretFly wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:Absolutely, but no other player has walked away from the team because of it.

.

Well, nothing was directly pointed at them.  They weren't under the coaching focus.  It was Finn himself.  So maybe they are just keeping their heads down and mostly deciding it has nothing to do with them  - that it's a Townsend v Russell fight.

But for arguments sake let's say Maitland finds himself ordered into a room by Townsend where in no uncertain terms he is told to keep his mouth shut, not to try to be intimating support for Russell, not to be getting involved in administration issues that has nothing to do with him, etc etc.  How might that player feel then?  Then it would be kinda personal, then he might think his coach is over stepping his role and misreading his words etc, etc.

So no need for players to walk unless someone turns focus on them in a negative way.  Because that's what this all stems from - negative feedback directed at certain Russell actions, him reacting to it and then all hell breaking loose.  A personality clash that obviously has been ongoing but a particular spark, a particular accusation, that brought it to a head.  Happens the world over really ever second of every day.  This is magnified in public terms because it is a big sport and famous people involved.  

It's just a major falling out between two human beings, that's kinda all it is.

But that kind of sums up my point. No-one else has had an issue.

The stuff above - that is pure speculation and is there is NO evidence of that ever happening

I have not seen any negative comments about Finn apart from him being asked BY PLAYERS to stop drinking then he storming off and NOT TURNING UP FOR Training

The amount of fiction being written to prove that Finn was in his rights to do this is staggering

Falling out happens - walking away from the team, demanding EVERYONE Changes to suit one person is a major flaw in that person

99.9% Finns fault with all evidence I have seen so far

Good riddance to him - he seems poison :-)


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Post by tigertattie Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:22 am

Scotland 6 Nations Thread - Page 15 1ac98810
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Post by tigertattie Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:26 am

jimbopip wrote:
RDW wrote:Aye if it was Peter Horne doing this I think everyone would be Team Toonie!

So will Furra Linee or Meatball be the back up 10 in Italy?

Meatball is in the squad so surely would be the 10 backup

Unless Toonie still views Hutch as a 10.

I'll tell you this though. The 10/12 channel for Italy is very very narrow with Canna (a 10) being palyed at 12.

For Italy I'd consider putting Matt Scott (12) at 12 for Scotland, outside Hastings and have him run at Canna all day long. Then Have Hutch or Huw onhis shoulder at the angle to feed off any oy going down that channel. Surely it would then finally be try time for us.
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Post by NeilyBroon Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:27 am

Nah it'll be hutch so Toonie can still fit the hardest working centre in the world to his plans.

I cant imagine there'll be much change. Bradbury likely will drop to bench or out (unless Toonie is blind). Skinner will get a call, Toolis may start, GG on bench. I can't see there being too much experimentation as this'll be a must win so that Mr Teflon can scrape by and carry on with his new mission to make Scotland the hardest defending and lowest scoring team in the world. Otherwise known as the Robinson technique.
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Post by bsando Tue 11 Feb 2020, 10:49 am

RDW wrote:
bsando wrote:https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-glaringly-obvious-problem-in-scotlands-game-plan-that-has-to-stop

I believe most of this article to be correct. That probably places a lot of blame on Danny Wilson as well as Townsend for renewed white line fever. I had no idea our attacking maul was quite as bad as this.

Wilson has not been a good appointment - our lineout and mauls have been crap under his watch, his main areas of responsibility.

We're yet to see all these innovative ideas Toonie told us he would be bringing!

I wonder how he'll get on at Glasgow? He seemed a good coach for the Blues and my friend who is a Blues fan rates him quite highly. I had high hopes for him when he joined Scotland but there just hasn't been any obvious improvement.

Bringing in scrum coach PDV has definitely made a difference there. Sutherland has backed up his excellent strength and fitness off the field with rejuvenated form for Scotland which is amazing to see. He's probably going to be Scotland's player of the tournament at this rate. If Townsend were to get the boot after the 6N at least whoever comes in next would have some good assistant coaches as a platform to assemble their own team. Tandy and PDV have been excellent additions to the coaching staff and Blair must have learnt loads on his coaching journey so far.

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