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Ireland 2021/22

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Post by profitius Wed Oct 06, 2021 12:15 am

The squad will be named in about 4 weeks time so that should give players the chance to play their way in or out of the squad.


I think this season will see a number of players breaking into the squad or forcing their way up the pecking order. A few that spring to mind are Dan Sheehan, Hume, Coombes, Casey, Harry Byrne..


Porter to loosehead gives that position a boost although Furlong becomes even more important.
Sheehan has looked very good. Darts seem good and he's good around the pitch.


Doris, Conan and Coombes battling for 6 and 8. Good options. Can Leave get back to near his best.


Casey is pushing hard and there's also the emergence of Doak. All of a sudden a traditional problem position is looking strong.


Carbery has been very poor in the first 2 games. He has to get a grip. Harry Byrne is the hot new talent but I don't think the man can stay fit. Ben Healy could be in with a shout.


I'd have Hume ahead of Ringrose now. Henshaw leading the 12s.


Options in the outside backs also but nearly every option has a question mark around them. Lowes defence, Stockdale errors, Earls' age etc. I think Keenan is first choice 15.
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Post by Pete330v2 Thu Oct 07, 2021 9:29 pm

We have options in the pack, both young and old, finding the right balance will be crucial. Coombes should be one of the first names on the team sheet at the moment IMO but there's certainly more than enough competition for places.
I do like the thought of a Hume/Henshaw centre partnership. Both players bring bags of physicality but more importantly they're both very skillful and intelligent ball players.
We've got talented 9's, the ones with the most talent haven't got the experience though. Will they stand a chance? Will Casey rise to power? Will Cooney ever get a look-in?
I've never understood the hype surrounding Carberry, I don't see the sparkle that others do but we're slim on 10's. Sexton can't tread water for us much longer but nobody has stood out, raised their head above the parapet or even come close to stealing Johnny's shirt.
Outside back options are pretty healthy. Stockdale will come good again, Lowe will work on his defence and the likes of Addison, Baloucoune, Larmour, Daly and Conway will continue to push for the shirts.

Can Farrell make these amazing ingredients into a Michelin Star winning dish?

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Post by profitius Thu Oct 07, 2021 11:52 pm

Pete, I think it's a big season for Farrell. Will he be brave and continue with playing a fast tempo game or will he revert back to the safe, percentage rugby. I think the England win and summer matches should give him a bit of confidence.


I don't see Cooney getting called it at all. It was hinted that there's a personality clash with Sexton.
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Post by profitius Tue Oct 19, 2021 12:50 am

Squad will be named on Wednesday. Sexton has a hip injury and Addison has a long term injury. Some things never change. Good luck to Addison.


Dan Sheehan looks a certainty to be included.
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Post by Brendan Wed Oct 20, 2021 1:44 am

profitius wrote:Squad will be named on Wednesday. Sexton has a hip injury and Addison has a long term injury. Some things never change. Good luck to Addison.


Dan Sheehan looks a certainty to be included.

Not having Sexton could be a blessing in disguise if it forces us to play 10s in pressure games rather than a nothing game that we win by 30pts.

If Sexton plays we get a player off the bench when the game is won or lost.

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Post by Maine man Thu Oct 21, 2021 6:44 am

Ireland squad for 2021 Autumn Nations Series

Backs: Bundee Aki (Connacht), Robert Baloucoune (Ulster), Harry Byrne (Leinster), Joey Carbery (Munster), Craig Casey (Munster), Andrew Conway (Munster), Keith Earls (Munster), Ciaran Frawley (Leinster), Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster), James Hume (Ulster), Hugo Keenan (Leinster), Jordan Larmour (Leinster), James Lowe (Leinster), Stuart McCloskey (Ulster), Conor Murray (Munster), Garry Ringrose (Leinster), Johnny Sexton (Leinster), Simon Zebo (Munster)

Forwards: Ryan Baird (Leinster), Finlay Bealham (Connacht), Tadhg Beirne (Munster), Jack Conan (Leinster), Gavin Coombes (Munster), Ultan Dillane (Connacht), Caelan Doris (Leinster), Tadhg Furlong (Leinster), Cian Healy (Leinster), Iain Henderson (Ulster), Rob Herring (Ulster), Ronan Kelleher (Leinster), Dave Kilcoyne (Munster), Peter O'Mahony (Munster), Tom O'Toole (Ulster), Andrew Porter (Leinster), James Ryan (Leinster), Dan Sheehan (Leinster), Nick Timoney (Ulster), Josh van der Flier (Leinster)


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Post by profitius Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:18 pm

Jamie Osborne and Tom Ahern are called in to train. No Doak, Healy or anyone else.
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Post by Maine man Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:19 pm

It's a bit conservative but i expect nothing else from the current Irish management set up.

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Post by Brendan Fri Oct 22, 2021 8:51 pm

Not happy Harry got called up.  Hasn't really do anything in the Zebre game and has shown nothing to back up the hype.  Healy did more v Scarlets in front of a hostile crowd than Harry's armchair ride in front of home fans.

I think the 4 teams are stronger enough to say if you can't make a starting spot in your province you don't get picked.  There is enough players at a really good standard that do it week in week out.

Flyhalves should be from Sexton, Burns, Healy and Carbery pick three.  If the Byrnes or Healy can't displace the provincial incumbent why get into Ireland.  Move if you have too.

On that basis I would have Doak over Murrary as he hasn't played and is not getting his confidence back being slogged at internationals.

We need to work on 2 players per position with enough experience.

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Fri Oct 22, 2021 9:48 pm

Brendan wrote:Not happy Harry got called up.  Hasn't really do anything in the Zebre game and has shown nothing to back up the hype.  Healy did more v Scarlets in front of a hostile crowd than Harry's armchair ride in front of home fans.

I think the 4 teams are stronger enough to say if you can't make a starting spot in your province you don't get picked.  There is enough players at a really good standard that do it week in week out.

Flyhalves should be from Sexton, Burns, Healy and Carbery pick three.  If the Byrnes or Healy can't displace the provincial incumbent why get into Ireland.  Move if you have too.

On that basis I would have Doak over Murrary as he hasn't played and is not getting his confidence back being slogged at internationals.

We need to work on 2 players per position with enough experience.

On that basis drop Healy or Porter, drop Sheehan or Kelleher, drop Conan or Doris?

I also don't think Harry deserves a call up (even if it's to just be in camp and hold a tackle bag). But i'd still have him ahead of burns on a depth chart, i'd have ross ahead of burns too (tbh I think frawley is a better 10 than burns also). Why no love for Carty?

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Post by Brendan Fri Oct 22, 2021 11:40 pm

Healy and Porter could make an exception for on the basis of they cover both sides.  Hooker definately if you aren't number 1 in your province move or try harder.

Issue with the flyhalves is we have three players who could break any moment.  We then have to call up new players.  I would have Carty instead if Byrnes but Farrel isn't sure on him

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Post by profitius Mon Oct 25, 2021 7:39 pm

Harry is very talented so I can see why he's called up. I think Farrell just doesn't want to chop and change his 10s too much and is looking at the long term. Harry and Carbery have challengers. Crowley being the main one.


Would agree that Doak should be in the training squad at least.
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Post by thebandwagonsociety Tue Oct 26, 2021 11:21 pm

I presume the IRFU had to commit to Zebo that he'd be starting 15 at the RWC in order to get him back to Ireland. Lack of conditioning has him on the wing rather than fullback for Munster. Kicking Keenan to the curb as he doesn't have the x factor I guess?

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Post by profitius Fri Oct 29, 2021 2:20 am

thebandwagonsociety wrote:I presume the IRFU had to commit to Zebo that he'd be starting 15 at the RWC in order to get him back to Ireland. Lack of conditioning has him on the wing rather than fullback for Munster. Kicking Keenan to the curb as he doesn't have the x factor I guess?


I doubt it. Zebo hasn't played there for munster.
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Post by geoff999rugby Sat Oct 30, 2021 8:55 am

Absolutely zero chance the IRFU have committed to Zebo being a starter.

The promise would have been limited to him being considered for selection on merit

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Post by Brendan Sun Oct 31, 2021 2:04 am

Watching the Scotland game they are giving their young players a go rewarding the players showing promise.

I do wonder if some players would have been called up for the USA game but didn't once it was cancelled.

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Post by Brendan Mon Nov 01, 2021 10:39 pm

Not sure if anyone noticed Italy are getting their A team going again to make up for lack of game for developing players.  It will mainly be against T2 European sides.

With the talent coming through at the provinces would it be something to use in Ireland.  Maybe instead of T2 we play it against the provinces.  2 in the AIs and 2 in the 6N.

Or would a little tournament with the other European based URC nations A side in the 6Ns work better.

My view which isn't going to happen is work with the B6N and try include the A sides in with them in the 6N window so it's games that matter while helping T2.
Div 1 = Georgia, Rominia, Spain, Ireland A, Wales A
Div 2 = Russia, Netherlands, Portugal, Scotland A, Italy A.
The A Teams play their two home games on the rest week of the 6N to boast attendance.
To make up the missing game for the T2 Nations they can play D1 top team plays bottom team D2 winners get promoted to D1 next year.  A Teams could do the same to determine which team plays D1.  Not going to happen but what I think would work best for everyone. T2 get better games and A sides play grown men rather than another A side in a nothing game.
Ireland's home 2/3 games could be played at Ravenhill, Thomond and Sportground with a few extra local players picked When played in the province.

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Post by profitius Tue Nov 02, 2021 7:19 am

Mack Hansen called up.
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Post by profitius Tue Nov 02, 2021 7:21 am

Brendan wrote:Not sure if anyone noticed Italy are getting their A team going again to make up for lack of game for developing players.  It will mainly be against T2 European sides.

With the talent coming through at the provinces would it be something to use in Ireland.  Maybe instead of T2 we play it against the provinces.  2 in the AIs and 2 in the 6N.

Or would a little tournament with the other European based URC nations A side in the 6Ns work better.

My view which isn't going to happen is work with the B6N and try include the A sides in with them in the 6N window so it's games that matter while helping T2.
Div 1 = Georgia, Rominia, Spain, Ireland A, Wales A
Div 2 = Russia, Netherlands, Portugal, Scotland A, Italy A.
The A Teams play their two home games on the rest week of the 6N to boast attendance.
To make up the missing game for the T2 Nations they can play D1 top team plays bottom team D2 winners get promoted to D1 next year.  A Teams could do the same to determine which team plays D1.  Not going to happen but what I think would work best for everyone. T2 get better games and A sides play grown men rather than another A side in a nothing game.
Ireland's home 2/3 games could be played at Ravenhill, Thomond and Sportground with a few extra local players picked When played in the province.

They need to find some solution because you can't have the squad doing nothing for 5 weeks. Some players have not played this season. At least the AIL is back which is good news. Maybe they should focus on improving that.
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Post by geoff999rugby Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:21 am

Disgraceful decision.

Slap in the face for a number of Irishmen,
.
I couldn’t give a Poopie how Ireland perform while Farrell is in charge

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Post by Brendan Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:21 am

Only issue with the AIL is players are being given some down time.  Not sure how many would pick a match in front of a few hundred people over a weekend in Spain.

I hope the IRFU does sort it out (I am sure they have plans).  Having them go back to the AIL is great for the league but not sure it is great for the players.  Yes they stay fit but it won't be the greatest standard.

I am sure without all the covid red tape they will be able to do more next year.

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Post by Brendan Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:26 am

geoff999rugby wrote:Disgraceful decision.

Slap in the face for a number of Irishmen,
.
I couldn’t give a Poopie how Ireland perform while Farrell is in charge

He has played well and like Lowe is good going forward not so much the other way.  Have to wonder if it's to tie him to Ireland as Australia could call him up too with their issues.

But agree it's not a great call.

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Post by geoff999rugby Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:39 am

Cause it’s about tie him Ireland.

Call me old fashion but International caps should be based on merit not selection politics steam

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Post by Unclear Wed Nov 03, 2021 7:05 am

I must admit the Hansen call up doesn't sit well with me, but all countries do it as it is within the regulations.  At least the residency qualification is bit more realistic these days.  However perhaps we should campaign to remove the grandmother/father rule for the tier 1 nations, but leave the option for the countries where the game needs to grow.

But Hansen has been selected for the squad and should he actually get game time (I would think it unlikely at this stage) I will accord him the same support as the rest of the team.

Does the Henderson interview on the BBC website mean he is a likely starter at the weekend or am making 2 and 2 equal 5?

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Post by Brendan Wed Nov 03, 2021 8:38 am

I have no issue with the grandparent rule.  The issue I have is he has played less than 10 games for Connacht.  If he deserves a call up then Doak definately does.

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Post by geoff999rugby Wed Nov 03, 2021 8:50 am

Doak will play 10 times more games for Ireland than Hansen does.

Probably 20 times as many

No rush to pick him though as he is is 100 % Irish

Joke censored


Last edited by geoff999rugby on Wed Nov 03, 2021 7:40 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by George Carlin Wed Nov 03, 2021 3:46 pm

Which stand-out youngfellers should we be looking out for from Ireland this winter?
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Post by geoff999rugby Wed Nov 03, 2021 7:56 pm

If Murray Kinsella knows what he talking about - questionable
the only youngster you will see is Baloucoune

If we don’t play youngster against Japan when will we
New Zealand Headscratch

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Post by geoff999rugby Wed Nov 03, 2021 8:04 pm

The whole half back selection is a joke
Harry Byrne has had 1 armchair ride against Zebre and that’s it this season.
Joey Carbery is playing like a drain and is not even the best 10 in Munster at the moment.
Frawley isn’t playing 10 this year, he is playing 12.
Johnny is, as we all know, held together by sticking plaster

Healy and Carty should be backups to Sexton.

To be clear whilst I totally accept that Leinster are the best province, and by some margin, you would to be mad not to come to that conclusion, there are two positions where they are not.
I’d take the first choice wingers at both Munster and Ulster over Lowe and Lamour any day of the week.
As to JPG what exactly does he have on Farrell?
There are two better 9s at each of the other three provinces, totally bizarre.

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Post by Unclear Wed Nov 03, 2021 8:56 pm

There is no point in just playing youngsters for the sake of it, there needs to be some plan behind it, and that is what I feel is lacking.  The IRFU could, and as far as the rumours go, does "influence" the provinces in who plays where, but again that needs to have plan behind it.  Sexton has been elastoplasted (other medical dressings are available) together for years, but there appears no coherent plan for a successor.  It may be that his immediate successor isn't as good, but he will be needed as one of few certainties is that Sexton will retire at some point.

The same situation appears to be developing at scrum half.  If we can't get 2 of the really key positions sorted we will always be on the verge of crisis.  Admittedly we seem to like that feeling, but it can't be good.

I hope the selection for the Japan game shows some planned development, but it's all a bit glass half empty at the moment.

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Post by Pot Hale Wed Nov 03, 2021 11:08 pm

Good to see Mack Hansen has been included in the Autumn squad. He's been playing really well for Connacht.
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Post by geoff999rugby Wed Nov 03, 2021 11:15 pm

Ireland have a top quality replacement for Sexton In Paddy Jackson but they won’t pick him now.
They then crossed their figures and prayed that Carbery would be good enough.
Unfortunately he like Burns and Harry Byrne isn’t good enough.
There are some players who have potential but the three aforementioned players are being picked in preference.

I am not concerned about scum half there is plenty of talent coming through, the only issue there is why JPG is getting selected ahead of said talent.

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Post by geoff999rugby Wed Nov 03, 2021 11:16 pm

Pot Hale wrote:Good to see Mack Hansen has been included in the Autumn squad.  He's been playing really well for Connacht.  

We will have to differ big time on that.
If he was Irish born he would not have been selected, that’s the bottom line for me

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Wed Nov 03, 2021 11:55 pm

I see Doak is the new messiah. 7 senior appearances for Ulster and a strong showing in the u20 Irish team last 6N. Give the guy a chance to settle in. How about 4 european matches and have him starting scrum half for the 6Ns? JGP has been playing great with good tempo on the form team, he's earned his place.

Healy should be getting game time ahead of Carberry or either of the Byrnes. Frawley is in the squad as a centre not an outhalf, which basically means he will hold the tackle bags for the month. Carberry needs to prove he isn't fragile and survive a string of games while showing form. Sexton we know what we get, he needs to be limited minutes (so starting 60 mins against NZ and closing 20-30 mins against Argentina to keep his eye in at test level, the next two outhalfs in line should split first game 50-30 with the better performer getting the start for Argentina and the other getting the bench for NZ... either way we need to get minutes into our depth chart).

Ringrose seems to be getting dismissed by the thread altogether? hmmm, agree to disagree there.

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Post by geoff999rugby Thu Nov 04, 2021 12:14 am

No one is saying Doak is the new messiah but he is a highly talented scrum half who is 3 years younger than Casey for example and been able to slot in effortless as a scrum half behind a weak back row.

The sort of talent that should be with Ireland to gain experience.
Also I’ve not seen anyone say he should start for Ireland either.
Sorry JPG, by comparison gets an arm chair ride from his back row.
For me he gets selected because he plays with Leinster and knows the players around him, not because he is the best SH ; he is not even close.

Who has been dismissing Ringrose?
The recent discussion has been about 9 and 10.
Ringrose and Henshaw remain the best centre pairing for me, as I acknowledge when stating Leinster were the leading province in every position bar wing and SH.

If I was picking the best Ireland side 10 player would be Leinstermen.
Only Henderson and Berne, as a 6, make the side besides 9, 11 and 14.

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:39 am

I’m just a little narky today that’s all.

Murray Kinsella’s inside source strength on show once again? He has put this up on 42 dot ie
Possible Ireland XV (v Japan):

15. Hugo Keenan
14. Keith Earls/Andrew Conway
13. Garry Ringrose
12. Bundee Aki
11. James Lowe
10. Johnny Sexton (captain)
9. Jamison Gibson-Park

1. Andrew Porter/Cian Healy
2. Rob Herring
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Iain Henderson
5. James Ryan
6. Tadhg Beirne
7. Josh van der Flier
8. Jack Conan.

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:42 am

Opportunity missed. Need to give minutes to the squad depth this far out from a rwc, not selecting a bunch of veterans to dust off their rustiness.

Maybe he feels his contract might be on the line? There is a small window right now where you could hit reset maybe? (Irfu wouldn’t have to balls to make such a bold and adventurous move).

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Post by George Carlin Thu Nov 04, 2021 10:35 am

Is Carberry really as bad as he’s being made out to be?
I’ve never seen him have a truly bad game.
Or has his early season form really been poor?
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Post by profitius Thu Nov 04, 2021 7:36 pm

George Carlin wrote:Is Carberry really as bad as he’s being made out to be?
I’ve never seen him have a truly bad game.
Or has his early season form really been poor?


Been poor this season but he's a class player. The question is is he goosed after all the injuries.
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Post by profitius Thu Nov 04, 2021 7:38 pm

Gerry Thornleys predicted squad. I hope that's not correct.


IRELAND (possible) v Japan: H Keenan; A Conway, G Ringrose, B Aki, J Lowe; J Sexton, J Gibson-Park; A Porter, R Kelleher, T Furlong; J Ryan, T Beirne; C Doris, J van der Flier, J Conan.

Replacements: D Sheehan or R Herring, C Healy or D Kilcoyne, F Bealham or Healy, I Henderson, P O’Mahony, C Murray, J Carbery, K Earls.
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Post by thebandwagonsociety Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:50 pm

profitius wrote:Gerry Thornleys predicted squad. I hope that's not correct.


IRELAND (possible) v Japan: H Keenan; A Conway, G Ringrose, B Aki, J Lowe; J Sexton, J Gibson-Park; A Porter, R Kelleher, T Furlong; J Ryan, T Beirne; C Doris, J van der Flier, J Conan.

Replacements: D Sheehan or R Herring, C Healy or D Kilcoyne, F Bealham or Healy, I Henderson, P O’Mahony, C Murray, J Carbery, K Earls.

Was looking at that too. Both Murray and Gerry are consistent with the backline (wonder if that is where their source is). Strange that Gerry is almost saying Herring not in the matchday squad and Murray putting him as starting. Anyone with eyes on lineout practice and drills during the last few days would probably be able to make that call quicker (unless does Herring have a knock?).

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Fri Nov 05, 2021 12:27 am

And the team is announced (off of RTE);

Ireland: Hugo Keenan; Andrew Conway, Garry Ringrose, Bundee Aki, James Lowe; Johnny Sexton, Jamison Gibson-Park; Andrew Porter, Rónan Kelleher, Tadhg Furlong; Tadhg Beirne, James Ryan,Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan.

Replacements: Dan Sheehan, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, Iain Henderson, Peter O'Mahony, Conor Murray, Joey Carbery, Keith Earls.


I guess Gerry has the better connections....

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Post by Kingshu Fri Nov 05, 2021 12:46 am

One ulster player makes the bench, the same contribution Ulster have in the Wales team. What do Ulster players have to do to be picked? They are second best team in the league yet have one player picked, for the bench?!?!

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Post by profitius Fri Nov 05, 2021 1:39 am

Hes basically picking the leinster side because they all play together and are a cohesive unit. That's my take on it. The man must be gripped with the fear of losing.


I don't see the point of Healy, POM, Murray and Earls on the bench either.
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Post by thebandwagonsociety Fri Nov 05, 2021 1:39 am

And 2 Connacht players in the match day squad.

Only Conway, Aki & Beirne get in to start among the side topping the URC table at the break [though tables this stage of the season mean sweet f a ].

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Fri Nov 05, 2021 1:41 am

profitius wrote:Hes basically picking the leinster side because they all play together and are a cohesive unit. That's my take on it. The man must be gripped with the fear of losing.


I don't see the point of Healy, POM, Murray and Earls on the bench either.

Totally agree, it's the autumn internationals, it's time to build caps in your squad depth and get the players from various club/provincial teams used to playing match minutes together.

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Post by Unclear Fri Nov 05, 2021 1:45 am

Personally I find the selection very disappointing, and reflective of a short term view.  I want to see Ireland progressing further than the World Cup quarter finals, and I believe there needs to be a change in the way the international squad is selected and run to achieve this.  It feels to me that the priority is always to win the next few games and the future after that will take care of itself.

Yes wins in the Autumn series are important and presumably affect world ranking points.  If we want to have the best chance against the All Blacks then it makes some sense to give the likely starters some playing time together, and that may well have been the plan all along.  The game against the USA would have given the opportunity to experiment more, but that has been lost due to the Covid issues.

Given this I would sacrifice preparation for the ABs game (which I think we will lose anyway) for some development.  Balacoune is the greatest thing since Morton sliced the loaf according to many Ulstermen, let's start to find out, or will international rugby expose weaknesses the way it has with Stockdale and Lowe.

Give Carberry and Casey the responsibility of starting and see what happens.  What will we learn from having Healy and O'Mahoney on the bench?  While we may be short of loosehead props, we have at least a full back row of prospects any one of whom could be on the bench.

Doing what we have always done will get us what we have always got (I think Einstein may have said it better), and I'm not satisfied with what we have always got.

But that doesn't mean I won't be watching at the weekend shouting incoherently at the TV, or that I will be returning the few World Cup tickets I have managed to get. Hope springs eternal.

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Post by Kingshu Fri Nov 05, 2021 2:16 am

Actually aside from Aki the whole 15 either played or play, for Leinster! No players from Munster, Ulster or Connachts academies.

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Post by Unclear Fri Nov 05, 2021 2:41 am

Personally I wouldn't care as long as it was the right 15 ....

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Post by Pot Hale Fri Nov 05, 2021 4:10 am

Out of that lot, I would hope that Sheahan, Carbery and Doris have good games. Clearly the canceled US game was the missed opportunity to blood more new names.

Assuming that Farrell's selection for New Zealand is going to largely come from this 23, then he has only the Argentina game to give the likes of O'Toole, Baird, Coombes, Casey, Hume, Harry Byrne, Balacoune, Hansen, Zebo, a day out on the pitch.
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