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England - what next?

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Post by hugehandoff Sat 06 Feb 2021, 6:48 pm

First topic message reminder :

Firstly I take nothing away from Scotland who were fantastic and I hope go on to win a grand slam.

For me this dire England performance may well be a blessing in disguise. Us winning the Autumn cup playing such awful rugby only covered up a number of cracks. We have nothing in attack and our discipline is consistently the worst in the world. We are saved by our defence.

Ok we were missing some props which taught us that Genge is not quite there. Plus Stuart very quiet in the loose. Mako making his usual 21 tackles would have helped. No need to panic, but Eddie has to accept that this is not just a blip but a reflection of recent dire performances. You cannot win matches giving away so many penalties and that is a recurring issue. And he chose to start all those rusty Sarries players who all looked off the pace. Why not start Cowan-Dickie?

But the midfield is dire and Farrell a real problem there. Just not good enough. I remember Eddie being ruthless and taking Luther Burrell off after 25 minutes against the Aussies. We needed that ruthless streak today and Ford should have replaced Farrell with 20 to go. Itoje a penalty machine but because he is normally a machine and plays the full 80 Eddie did not react.

Time for England to take a good hard look at this team and shake it up (not panic, but a decent shakeup).

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Post by lostinwales Mon 01 Mar 2021, 10:24 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:Now that ive calmed down....

One stat stood out....
Beard has played more games this season that the entire group of Saracens players! That one stat says it all. Jones is using this 6n to play the Saracens group into form and fitness...
Thats unacceptable.

Englands penalties are insane...

England need some power carriers....

Too many players need to up their game!!

Daly needs to go.

The ref DID have a huge influence on the game.

Staying well clear of the main threads as am just feeling angry about the game. Three things to say

1) The way that England came back after those atrocious decisions was very positive. The two tries they scored were top class. It wasn't enough but it was better than we have seen for a while. (Seeing Billy deciding he had a point to prove was fun too)
2) Ignoring everything else the influence of the ref could really be seen in the early parts of the 2nd half where both sides were just playing waiting for the inevitable penalty decision. Despite what I am going to say next the ref was tough on both teams.
3) I can't comment on the penalties. Many were moronic, as ever. Some were very 'borderline'. What I can say is that getting back into a game when you just feel the ref is against you is hard and very draining.

One game I had at schoolboy level I always remember because the referee ('their' games master of course) just blew up on everything, and we lost (one of about 4 games lost in 5 years). There was no flow, We never got anywhere.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 01 Mar 2021, 10:40 am

So...

Where does Eddie go after that....

Does he wave the axe....or does he see the fact many did play better and his policy of playing Saracens players in to form seems to be working (for some).

Or a bit of both...

Surely Daly cant continue...
He needs a heavy duty carrier in the midfield, or on the wing. Lawrence / Odogwu
etc
etc

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Post by nlpnlp Mon 01 Mar 2021, 10:54 am

Realistically Ireland, Scotland and Wales are never going to win the world cup.  Therefore for them the 6 Nations is the most important tournament.  France and England should be aspiring to win the world cup and should therefore see the 6 Nations as the means to an end.  I appreciate that is my view and many traditionalists won't agree, but I would gladly swap a 6 Nations Grand Slam for a world cup.

Whilst I want England to win every game they play, whether we win the 6 Nations or come mid-table is immaterial, as long as we are using it as part of a plan towards winning the big prize.  Playing the Saracens players when unfit was clearly a mistake if winning the 6 Nations was what we were trying to do, but it is likely that most of them will be part of England’s world cup team in 2023.

The issues which we have and have had for a while are:

• A balanced backrow.  With Billy’s inability to jump, we need one of the flankers to be a genuine lineout option.  We either need a genuine 6 who can jump (and not a second row like Lawes), or a change to an 8 who can jump.

• We need a genuine option at 9 to Youngs.  Robson looks short of confidence in an England shirt, desperate to justify his selection, etc.  All of this comes from Eddie’s refusal to trust any other scrumhalf.

• We need to get a flyhalf who can play more than one way.  Does any other International teams flip flop between two no 10’s – clearly an acknowledgment that Ford and Farrell are both limited.

• A centre partnership that compliment each other and the way the team wants to play.

• A fullback who can catch a ball and add something going forward.

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Post by BamBam Mon 01 Mar 2021, 2:11 pm

Dear lord I actually agree with Soul

I'm still minded to make wholesale changes for the last two games, but I could understand Eddie going with a similar line up and telling them to go out and win the last two using the frustration from this one as motivation. The overall performance was a lot better, and who knows what the result would have been if we didn't need to chase those 14 points

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 01 Mar 2021, 2:33 pm

Eddie wont make many changes at all...

If we do see changes it will be in the Summer / Autumn depending what is scheduled for then...

i honestly think hes "sacrificed" (if this is the right word) this 6n in order to keep many of his core squad (most of the Sarries crowd) playing some games...knowing they wont be match fit etc.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 01 Mar 2021, 2:38 pm

Daly will be dropped. Cant stay after that.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 01 Mar 2021, 2:43 pm

Im not sure 7.5, Watson to 15, Daly to 14...

He wont make any changes i dont think.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 01 Mar 2021, 2:49 pm

Well watson to 15 would be a blessing.

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Post by Soul Requiem Mon 01 Mar 2021, 3:09 pm

Daly is in the team for his distribution from 15 which has dropped off a cliff since the world cup while he has improved in the air in recent times, seems to suggest that he's spent so much time addressing the issues in his game that he's neglected his strengths which was always likely to happen.

I'd be revamping the whole backline and it cannot be underestimated the effect not having Tuilagi is having on the whole team, Billy was much improved on Saturday but loathe as I am to say it Wilson doesn't look up to scratch any more.

9. Youngs
10. Ford
11. May
12. Not really got a solution here.
13. Lawrence
14. Watson
15. Slade

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 01 Mar 2021, 3:31 pm

Im a falcon...and i dont think Wilson should be selected now. Though he didnt give away any penalties...we need more speed and explosive power on the flanks.

9. Youngs
10. Ford
11. May
12. Slade
13. Lawrence
14. Odogwu
15. Watson

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Post by king_carlos Mon 01 Mar 2021, 3:44 pm

Watson really isn't a fullback. We'd lose what he adds in attack on the wing and gain little in defence.

1.Mako
2.LCD
3.Sinckler
4.Itoje
5.Hill
6.Curry
7.Earl
8.Vunipola

9.Youngs
10.Ford

11.May
12.Farrell
13.Lawrence
14.Watson
15.Malins

16.George
17.Genge
18.Stuart
19.Ewels
20.Wilson
21.Mitchell
22.Slade
23.Odogwu

From the current squad that's what I'd like to see.

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Post by lostinwales Mon 01 Mar 2021, 3:47 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Im a falcon...and i dont think Wilson should be selected now. Though he didnt give away any penalties...we need more speed and explosive power on the flanks.

9. Youngs
10. Ford
11. May
12. Slade
13. Lawrence
14. Odogwu
15. Watson

Wilson was anonymous. Good to see Billy a bit more back to normal though

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Post by tigertattie Mon 01 Mar 2021, 7:39 pm

Can anyone tell me why Sam simmonds isn’t even in the England squad?????
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Post by Gooseberry Mon 01 Mar 2021, 9:36 pm

tigertattie wrote:Can anyone tell me why Sam simmonds isn’t even in the England squad?????

He wasn't selected.

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Post by Mr Bounce Mon 01 Mar 2021, 10:39 pm

Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

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Post by Sharkey06 Mon 01 Mar 2021, 11:25 pm

Do you really want to be picking someone at 10 for England who doesn't play there for his club side?  Yes he has played 10 a lot in age grade rugby, but I think you would want him to have a run of games at 10 first in the premier league to show his ability.

If you don't think he is the future at 10 - and we do have a few of genuine alternatives such as Smith, Umaga and Simmonds (although Eddie clearly doesn't rate either Simmonds) - I don't see much upside throwing him in at the deep end and you run the risk of ruining his confidence.  If he had a bad 10 minutes, I could see Eddie hooking him and banishing him as he has done with others who have 'let him down'.

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Post by Sharkey06 Mon 01 Mar 2021, 11:35 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
tigertattie wrote:Can anyone tell me why Sam simmonds isn’t even in the England squad?????

He wasn't selected.

Eddie doesn't seem to want an 8 who likes to run into space rather than opponents.  Simmonds, Mercer and Dombrandt are all players who look to hit gaps, whereas Billy is happy playing the power game and trying to tie in opponents.  Unfortunately the form he is in right now, even the Welsh scrum half was able to take  him down quite easily 1 on 1.  Unless Billy breaks Eddie isn't going to drop him.

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Post by doctor_grey Mon 01 Mar 2021, 11:44 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Im a falcon...and i dont think Wilson should be selected now. Though he didnt give away any penalties...we need more speed and explosive power on the flanks.

9. Youngs
10. Ford
11. May
12. Slade
13. Lawrence
14. Odogwu
15. Watson
Considering who is available in this Six Nations squad, this is the backline I would like to see. Watson's future is not at the back but desperate times call for desperate measures. Malins is available to come on at fullback and Watson can revert to either wing as/if needed. Robson should have played himself out of contention by now.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Tue 02 Mar 2021, 5:55 am

Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

I don't think you can make "punts" at international level, play a guy in his position and give him time to develop. Malins has had a few games from the bench, he's overdue a start, give him the final 2 games.

Similar with scrum half, get Youngs out and start Robson for the last 2. If he doesn't produce the goods (which he hasn't consistently from the bench), ditch him and look to develop one of the other options.

My side for the final 2 games:

1. Mako
2. LCD
3. Sinkler
4. Itoje (c)
5. Hill
6. Curry
7. Earls
8. Billy

9. Robson
10. Ford
11. May
12. Slade
13. Lawrence
14. Watson
15. Mallins

16. George
17. Stuart
18. Obano
19. Ewels
20. Wilson
21. Mitchell/Randell
22. Odogwu
23. Daly

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 7:04 am

Malins is more of a ten than full back however of course.

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 7:50 am

Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

The grass isn't always greener. Ford and Farrell are the two best 10s by some margin. Malins will get his chance at full back hopefully he steps up.

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 7:55 am

If England lose to both Ireland and France in the same fashion as they did to Scotland, should we see it as Eddie Jones sabotaging the Lions chances of English players?

And is that calculated risk acceptable if it means we might have 5 fewer players on tour to avoid injury and fatigue in 2021/22 but several players feel he has let them and their professional ambitions down by playing on autopilot since the world cup?

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Post by Gooseberry Tue 02 Mar 2021, 8:49 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

I don't think you can make "punts" at international level, play a guy in his position and give him time to develop. Malins has had a few games from the bench, he's overdue a start, give him the final 2 games.

Similar with scrum half, get Youngs out and start Robson for the last 2. If he doesn't produce the goods (which he hasn't consistently from the bench), ditch him and look to develop one of the other options.

My side for the final 2 games:

1. Mako
2. LCD
3. Sinkler
4. Itoje (c)
5. Hill
6. Curry
7. Earls
8. Billy

9. Robson
10. Ford
11. May
12. Slade
13. Lawrence
14. Watson
15. Mallins

16. George
17. Stuart
18. Obano
19. Ewels
20. Wilson
21. Mitchell/Randell
22. Odogwu
23. Daly

Yeah chucking Malins in at 10 would be odd to say the least. Jones has spent time on guys like Umaga and bought through Malins as a fullback. The oddities of the auqd situation currently do make fundamental changes hard to make, but pressing the panic button for something that wasnt even plan B isnt likely to do much for the longer term even if it makes a difference for the remaining dead rubbers of this shambolic tournament.

In some ways it may benefit England more longer term to keep banging their heads against a brick wall and prove once and for all that Jones does need to move on from the core of his experienced team, or that they can pull their socks up and start performing again. One things for sure the Sraarcens lot cant keep clinging to the lack of rugby excuse, they have played 3 tests now and most of them had a lot of rugby through the autumn including the 8 tests.

Not sure about Itoje as captain, whilst he may be seen as a natural successor long term, and I do think farrell needs to be put in a room with a loaded gun to do the right thing, hes been a big part of the problem recently. Trying really hard and doing some great athletic Itoje stuff but still putting the opposition team in conrol by haemorrhaging penalties. Strikes as quite the opposite form what England need from a captain right now. Not quite sure who the answer is mind!


Actually sod it they might as well call up the cover squad and a tin of custard and see how that gets on. And Simmonds of course. Whistle

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Post by king_carlos Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:14 am

Curry would be my choice as skipper.

Itoje is brilliant but is already our best scrummaging lock, key to the lineout and one of our busiest players in defence. Adding to his work load wouldn't be my personal choice. Though I wouldn't be surprised if did a very fine job were he given the captaincy.

Curry is level headed, a guaranteed starter and far less critical to the set-piece so has less areas he's under a lot of pressure.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:26 am

whatahitson wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

The grass isn't always greener. Ford and Farrell are the two best 10s by some margin. Malins will get his chance at full back hopefully he steps up.

i actually dispute that...i personally believe Smith is a better 10 than Farrell is. How he's not in the England squad is beyond me. I genuinely hope Eddie has earmarked the Summer and Autumn games to blood him!

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:33 am

whatahitson wrote:If England lose to both Ireland and France in the same fashion as they did to Scotland, should we see it as Eddie Jones sabotaging the Lions chances of English players?

And is that calculated risk acceptable if it means we might have 5 fewer players on tour to avoid injury and fatigue in 2021/22 but several players feel he has let them and their professional ambitions down by playing on autopilot since the world cup?

I said previously...i think Eddie has kind of sacrificed this 6n to get the Saracens players involved. He must have known they would be unfit, and at this level that critical. They are getting fitter and were better against Wales . Billy had his best game for ages etc.
So maybe its one of those he felt was worth giving up with 2 years to go to the world cup.

The England players will still go on the lions tour and he can blood some new guys in the summer.

I wonder if Eddie will be asking some Sarries to move elsewhere for some games on loan...?

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:33 am

king_carlos wrote:Curry would be my choice as skipper.

Itoje is brilliant but is already our best scrummaging lock, key to the lineout and one of our busiest players in defence. Adding to his work load wouldn't be my personal choice. Though I wouldn't be surprised if did a very fine job were he given the captaincy.

Curry is level headed, a guaranteed starter and far less critical to the set-piece so has less areas he's under a lot of pressure.

Underhill is the natural captain in waiting IMO. He's also a better player than Curry. He just needs to stay fit, it's not much good psychologically if your captain is constantly injured. Itoje has durability going in his favour in that regard. It's hard to see Farrell being dropped as captain though.

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:36 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

The grass isn't always greener. Ford and Farrell are the two best 10s by some margin. Malins will get his chance at full back hopefully he steps up.

i actually dispute that...i personally believe Smith is a better 10 than Farrell is. How he's not in the England squad is beyond me. I genuinely hope Eddie has earmarked the Summer and Autumn games to blood him!

Not yet he isn't. Potential doesn't count over 80 odd caps of test experience or whatever he has. He can do things Farrell can't and in an ideal world Farrell would be a world class 12 given his skillset with a 10 like Ford, Cipriani, or Smith playing at 10, but you can't just say someone is better based on potential. Cipriani was a lot more talented but he wasn't a better test match 10 than Farrell.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:40 am

Curry is the man for captain. Guaranteed to start and good communication. If farrell were to be dropped the next up however is Ford, who has been underwhelming as well.

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Post by lostinwales Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:44 am

Captaincy - Everybody has their choices. I think Curry without Underhill is not showing up as well as we have become accustomed, but suspect that is partially because he's doing a lot more work than he was. I do think he's a better player than Underhill because there is much more to his game, but that is highly subjective and every time we question Underhill's position he comes in and plays and reminds you why he's first choice, probably by some margin.

I would be happy to see Itoje given a chance. He is that good that I think he can do it all. Even if it was too much I think making him choose the moments he gets most involved a little more carefully wouldn't be a bad thing.

Whoever it is it needs to be someone who is or can be a guaranteed pick and who can keep a level head. If it was someone who could really make a difference through their leadership that would be a great bonus, but those kinds of captains are rare.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:46 am

whatahitson wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

The grass isn't always greener. Ford and Farrell are the two best 10s by some margin. Malins will get his chance at full back hopefully he steps up.

i actually dispute that...i personally believe Smith is a better 10 than Farrell is. How he's not in the England squad is beyond me. I genuinely hope Eddie has earmarked the Summer and Autumn games to blood him!

Not yet he isn't. Potential doesn't count over 80 odd caps of test experience or whatever he has. He can do things Farrell can't and in an ideal world Farrell would be a world class 12 given his skillset with a 10 like Ford, Cipriani, or Smith playing at 10, but you can't just say someone is better based on potential. Cipriani was a lot more talented but he wasn't a better test match 10 than Farrell.

Im basing it on what im starting to see in the Prem. He has to be involved in the Summer and Autumn. Is farrell a potential world class 12? Im not sure...

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:49 am

Yes is the answer geordie. As ever not sure the 9 to 13 has the right balance though. Or even the backline. You could potentially have a cokanasiga (on form) or steward and have that different balance. The same goes the other way however you could drop the better player and create better balance.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:51 am

I'm thinking Itoje as he plays on the limit and traditionally the captain tends to get away with things a smudge more. Curry would also be a very good choice though, I'd be happy with both.

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Post by Soul Requiem Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:52 am

Curry without Underhill is difficult one to measure at the moment; I was a big advocate of Wilson being included but he's not shown up in either start thus far and has left Curry to do too much against two very good breakdown back rows. He is however alongside Itoje the first name on the team sheet, seems a bit too meek to be captain but on the flipside Maro seems a bit too exuberant for it. Either of them has to be a better option than Farrell though, I don't think there was anything wrong with his communication on Saturday but the northerness does seem to rub referees up the wrong way.

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:53 am

All that discussion shows is how incredibly good Tuilagi was (or maybe still is when healthy). The back line looked so much better and was able to attack much more consistently when he was there.

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Post by Soul Requiem Tue 02 Mar 2021, 9:55 am

doctor_grey wrote:All that discussion shows is how incredibly good Tuilagi was (or maybe still is when healthy).  The back line looked so much better and was able to attack much more consistently when he was there.    

I was pretty underwhelmed with his performances in 2019 for instance but that was in comparison to his level in 2012. Now he's not there you realise his worth to the team, he doesn't need ball in hand to create space such is his reputation.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:00 am

Doc,
I think it shows we are missing a hard ball carrier...be it Manu, Cockasaniga, Lawrence, Odogwu etc...

Too many playmakers and not enough brute force and power to get over the gainline...

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:01 am

Underhill is a better player than Curry by quite some extent. Curry is good but Underhill is world class he's walking in to the Lions squad whereas Curry has a fight on his hand. Underhill is now top 3 most important players for England and for me the next captain. The problem is Farrell is obviously a leader and looks like he is almost coaching the team as well at this point.

This is an interesting video displaying Farrell's tenacity but also why for me he is not a good on field captain. He is probably great in the week and for motivating and leading the team but he cannot handle the referee well at all. Warburton showed how important managing referees was how many games did he help Wales and the Lions win by getting on the good side of the ref? Underhill talks well and has the focus and drive of a winner without losing his head. He's the closest thing to Warburton and the man for me.


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Post by king_carlos Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:11 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:If England lose to both Ireland and France in the same fashion as they did to Scotland, should we see it as Eddie Jones sabotaging the Lions chances of English players?

And is that calculated risk acceptable if it means we might have 5 fewer players on tour to avoid injury and fatigue in 2021/22 but several players feel he has let them and their professional ambitions down by playing on autopilot since the world cup?

I said previously...i think Eddie has kind of sacrificed this 6n to get the Saracens players involved. He must have known they would be unfit, and at this level that critical. They are getting fitter and were better against Wales . Billy had his best game for ages etc.
So maybe its one of those he felt was worth giving up with 2 years to go to the world cup.

The England players will still go on the lions tour and he can blood some new guys in the summer.

I wonder if Eddie will be asking some Sarries to move elsewhere for some games on loan...?
Due to the Autumn Nations Cup, Premiership starting late and the England squad having to bubble the entire side are lacking club game time. The Sarries players getting picked exacerbates that but everyone concentrating on that seems to have missed how little game time the whole squad has had.

The decision to finish the 2019/20 Premiership season meant that the 2020/21 season started on the 20th November as opposed to the Pro14 starting on 1st October. The Pro14 had 6 rounds underway by the time the Premiership restarted properly.

Then the European games got cancelled without Premiership games brought forward leaving another 2 weeks empty. The Premiership hasn't rearranged cancelled games leaving empty weekends for many clubs. Then the squad is in a bubble meaning they can't get away for game time.

Several of us have named Ollie Lawrence in our desired sides. He has played twice for Worcester this season. Between two games for Worcester and the Calcutta Cup start where Lawrence barely touched the ball he has now played less minutes since the ANC finished than the Sarries players most of us want dropped because they are short of game time.

Between the Autumn Nations Cup finishing and the Six Nations starting for instance Tigers had 3 complete fixtures that the England players could be involved in.

The way covid has fallen the entire squad, Sarries players or not, have almost no game time since the ANC.


Last edited by king_carlos on Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:12 am; edited 2 times in total

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:12 am

Like coughing up a fur ball. Shame cokanasiga hasn't come back from his injury with any sort of form. He was playing really well before that and starting to put pressure on may and watson. Nowell is a big miss too. Small guy but carries like a bar steward.

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Post by lostinwales Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:14 am

I know this is a pointless argument but Underhill has a very simple set of tasks when he plays - at which he is undeniably brilliant. But he gets injured all the time. Curry can play across the backrow and there are more strings to his bow. The fact that he can't tackle as hard as Underhill is not the be all and end all - and may well mean he has a much longer career.

There is a lot of 'absence making the heart grow fonder' going on with any number of players. Pandemic conditions are hard, and I don't think many of England's team are showing well at the moment compared to what they have done in the past. It doesn't mean that parachuting other players in will make the team play better. They might, and that is what we are debating, but there is no guarantee they will.

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Post by lostinwales Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:15 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Like coughing up a fur ball. Shame cokanasiga hasn't come back from his injury with any sort of form. He was playing really well before that and starting to put pressure on may and watson. Nowell is a big miss too. Small guy but carries like a bar steward.

Put those claws away

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:15 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Would Malins at 10 be worth a punt? Might be worth investigating given he's played there a lot in the past. Or even start him at 15, then move him to 10 in place of Ford during the game?

I don't think he's the future at 10 necessarily but I'd like to see him given a chance to shine. The only other 10 who's played there under Jones is Cipriani, and he ain't coming back anytime soon. Ford or Farrell, that's it. Incredible.

The grass isn't always greener. Ford and Farrell are the two best 10s by some margin. Malins will get his chance at full back hopefully he steps up.

i actually dispute that...i personally believe Smith is a better 10 than Farrell is. How he's not in the England squad is beyond me. I genuinely hope Eddie has earmarked the Summer and Autumn games to blood him!

Not yet he isn't. Potential doesn't count over 80 odd caps of test experience or whatever he has. He can do things Farrell can't and in an ideal world Farrell would be a world class 12 given his skillset with a 10 like Ford, Cipriani, or Smith playing at 10, but you can't just say someone is better based on potential. Cipriani was a lot more talented but he wasn't a better test match 10 than Farrell.

Im basing it on what im starting to see in the Prem. He has to be involved in the Summer and Autumn. Is farrell a potential world class 12? Im not sure...

He was at one point in time if he played 15 years ago before 12s had to carry like flankers then definitely he would be considered a world class centre has the same sort of drive to improve and win that Wilkinson had he just isn't as good at leading the team from 10 as Wilkinson was. That doesn't mean he isn't still one of the best 10s for England my preference is always Ford at 10 because England look so much better with him in the team again I thought he showed real moments of class at the weekend and on another day with a better set piece those skills win the game. Marcus Smith will get his opportunity but he must also bide his time. Cipriani was never up to test rugby in my opinion, mentally as much as anything by the looks of things given where he is at the moment. It will be a big step up from the Prem for Smith just look at Finn Russell all the skills and one of the best club 10s in Europe but still a deeply flawed test match rugby player. I hope he makes it but at this point there's no rush Ford and Farrell are still the best options.

Out of interest how many 10s did Lancaster pick? We all know Jones keeps his squad similar for the experience. He picked 3 10s in 4 years, how many did Lancaster? Farrell, Ford, Freddie Burns...who else?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:26 am

Wilson's strength is carrying. It is not getting quickly to the breakdown or to opposition ball carriers. The best balance we now have is earl and curry on the flanks. Weakens the lineout though. Although wilson only went for 1 and lost it I think.

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:29 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:If England lose to both Ireland and France in the same fashion as they did to Scotland, should we see it as Eddie Jones sabotaging the Lions chances of English players?

And is that calculated risk acceptable if it means we might have 5 fewer players on tour to avoid injury and fatigue in 2021/22 but several players feel he has let them and their professional ambitions down by playing on autopilot since the world cup?

I said previously...i think Eddie has kind of sacrificed this 6n to get the Saracens players involved. He must have known they would be unfit, and at this level that critical. They are getting fitter and were better against Wales . Billy had his best game for ages etc.
So maybe its one of those he felt was worth giving up with 2 years to go to the world cup.

The England players will still go on the lions tour and he can blood some new guys in the summer.

I wonder if Eddie will be asking some Sarries to move elsewhere for some games on loan...?

Is it to get the Saracens players involved? Or is it just to stick to the status quo?

IMO Jones will want to find a way to win rugby matches without being physically dominant. He found a way to beat everyone in the world apart from the Springboks with the 'dominant tackle' form of defence, some key strike moves, kick off set piece plays, and a few other tactical elements that saw us batter Ireland and New Zealand and take care of Australia without too much trouble in 2019. The problem was that the Ireland team clearly was not as good as it was hyped up to be, and New Zealand were underpowered by their standards and they became obsessed with winning 'counter attacking' rugby where they refused to kick for territory or put in percentage plays, preferring to soak up pressure and try to attack from deep. Their own blinkered tactics played in to England's hands and really it should have been a 30+ point victory but I cannot see it happening again.

So where do England go? They can regularly beat every team apart from 2-3 in the world when at their best if they make their pack as strong as possible and use Tuilagi who is irreplaceable in the midfield. How do they beat the other 2-3 teams (NZ, SA, maybe France)? Well they need to find a way to win when their forwards aren't dominant and so far I cannot believe that Wales and in particular Scotland have outmuscled and outplayed the England pack without Jones knowing that it was a possibility based on how they are playing. Yes some of that will be Saracens players but I don't think that will be an issue now that the squad has been together for over a month maybe at the start but not now. Jonny Hill has only played 2 games for the Chiefs this season as well.

I think England are just cruising in 2nd gear and Jones doesn't want to have players ravaged by the Lions tour again. At the same time he said he won't change anything tactically until after the Lions tour so this is an opportunity to see how his team plays when the opposition know and can prepare tactically for England without facing anything unexpected. That's why England look so limited the opposition know what is coming but they are still losing narrowly in the grand scheme of things. This is good experience for the players to basically play games with a handicap it's like tabbing they will be stronger in the long run. I don't think it's about picking Saracens players as much as it is the fact that some of England's best players play for Saracens.

As I said on my other post England genuinely are miles ahead of the competition so yes they can sacrifice a six nations tournament or two. Pivac couldn't he has just saved his job by winning 3 games, Jones is in a completely different situation.

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Post by LondonTiger Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:38 am

I have deleted a couple of posts for being bickering or name calling that add nothing to the discussion.

The mods who are actually present most of the time are doing a great job of keeping things running smoothly,  but all posters whether old, infrequent visitors or indeed returning posters need to cut out the rubbish. None of you are children. None of you are stupid. Cut it out or lose the right to post.

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Post by whatahitson Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:40 am

I think a number of players like Lawes, Curry, Slade, Daly, Genge, Earl, Hill, Cowan Dickie, and even May would all have been test match candidates 6-12 months ago now they will have big question marks over them to even tour and some of them will miss out based on how poorly England are playing (intentional by Jones?).

Sinckler, Mako, Billy, Farrell, George, and Itoje are nailed on Lions. If Underhill is fit he is nailed on as well. Youngs, Watson, Ford, and Marler all stand a good chance as well but there could be a 10+ player swing of England players going on the Lions tour based on this six nations alone. Scotland will be happy as it might mean Watson and Ritchie instead of Curry and Earl, Gray instead of Kruis, Russell instead of Ford.

That is the kind of fine margins that Gatland will use to decide who tours. England have already lost against both of their 'Lions competition'. Is it too cynical to think this isn't just Jones hurting the Lions to benefit England in the long run?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue 02 Mar 2021, 10:50 am

Nice to see you back LT even if for the telling off.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Tue 02 Mar 2021, 12:12 pm

whatahitson wrote:I think a number of players like Lawes, Curry, Slade, Daly, Genge, Earl, Hill, Cowan Dickie, and even May would all have been test match candidates 6-12 months ago now they will have big question marks over them to even tour and some of them will miss out based on how poorly England are playing (intentional by Jones?).

Sinckler, Mako, Billy, Farrell, George, and Itoje are nailed on Lions. If Underhill is fit he is nailed on as well. Youngs, Watson, Ford, and Marler all stand a good chance as well but there could be a 10+ player swing of England players going on the Lions tour based on this six nations alone. Scotland will be happy as it might mean Watson and Ritchie instead of Curry and Earl, Gray instead of Kruis, Russell instead of Ford.

That is the kind of fine margins that Gatland will use to decide who tours. England have already lost against both of their 'Lions competition'. Is it too cynical to think this isn't just Jones hurting the Lions to benefit England in the long run?

No i dont think thats intentional...no one in their right mind would go out to play badly.

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Post by Gooseberry Tue 02 Mar 2021, 1:14 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
whatahitson wrote:I think a number of players like Lawes, Curry, Slade, Daly, Genge, Earl, Hill, Cowan Dickie, and even May would all have been test match candidates 6-12 months ago now they will have big question marks over them to even tour and some of them will miss out based on how poorly England are playing (intentional by Jones?).

Sinckler, Mako, Billy, Farrell, George, and Itoje are nailed on Lions. If Underhill is fit he is nailed on as well. Youngs, Watson, Ford, and Marler all stand a good chance as well but there could be a 10+ player swing of England players going on the Lions tour based on this six nations alone. Scotland will be happy as it might mean Watson and Ritchie instead of Curry and Earl, Gray instead of Kruis, Russell instead of Ford.

That is the kind of fine margins that Gatland will use to decide who tours. England have already lost against both of their 'Lions competition'. Is it too cynical to think this isn't just Jones hurting the Lions to benefit England in the long run?

No i dont think thats intentional...no one in their right mind would go out to play badly.

Are you suggesting that Eddie Jones is in his right mind?

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