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England - the build-up and winning the World Cup at a canter

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Wed 09 Aug 2023, 5:05 am

First topic message reminder :

Here we go again.....

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Post by Heaf Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:34 pm

Yoda wrote:
Heaf wrote:I suppose to be slightly fairer to England if the ref had officiated the rucks more evenly they might have done better as he seemed to give Ireland a free pass in the 2nd half - although England were also to blame for not resourcing them better ....

Yep, all sorts allowed but that doesn't stop us doing the same. If the ref doesn't call ruck then get your hands in there I say. If he's allowing players to lie on the floor and scoop the ball up then great both teams can it. We tried to copy Ireland at the break down but Ireland looked after the ball better than us.

Problem was consistency though - Ireland were allowed to go in the side but England were pinged if they didn't arrive at exactly 90 degrees ...

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:34 pm

Geordie wrote:Well I've been positive but not anymore.

England are just poor.
Our tightheads are awful!!
Number 8 shocking. Are Tom Willis And Mercer really worse than Billy??
9s are awful....
10s decent
Centre atrocious
Wings and full back not the right ones picked.

Defended Stewsrd so much but now I'm afraid there's glaring flags in his game.  Carpenter and Arundel should challenge after the world Cup.

Defence looks leaky and the attack looks missing.

Mateo Carreras (who sadly looks to be getting hunted by top French clubs) efc will rip us a new one.

To be honest the Fijian attack might rip us a new one...

Steward has an obvious weakness but Carpenter and Arundell aren't exactly polished options either. Freeman is probably the next best available option but needs to leave Saints or knobble Furbank so that he can properly stake a claim. I'm not sure any of them would have made the tackles to save the tries Steward seems to be vilified for.

Centre combination was ok. There's nothing established so it's going to take a while to bed in. The Irish options have been interchanging for years at this point and we kept them pretty quiet.

I thought Sinckler was good off the bench actually. Looked a lot fitter than a couple of weeks ago. Stuart was very disappointing though.

Back three has been the best unit we've selected in some time. Again, first game as a unit so they weren't clicking as well as they might after a few more games together. Having BillyV drop back and generally get in the way didn't help either.

Got to say I to am worried about the carnage the Puma back three might real against us. The only positive was how well (bar the first try) we defended the Irish forward charges, lineout and maul. All will be key elements for Argentina and if we can take those away they don't have the same attacking structure Ireland have so we might be able to limit their influence.

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Post by carpet baboon Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:34 pm

Ok England fans.
Pick 2 England XVs
One from the squad selected by Borthwick
And the other is your own XV from Amy eligible players on the squad or not

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Post by Heaf Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:38 pm

Can we pick players from other teams?

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Post by carpet baboon Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:47 pm

Heaf wrote:Can we pick players from other teams?
As long as they once met the queen

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Post by mountain man Sun 20 Aug 2023, 1:53 pm

Agree with Geordie pretty much.
Steward a really good player but England need more from a FB than what he is delivering.
Manu years past best, end of road.
The much praised England scrum just isn't good enough.

Have to get Mitchell in team. And Quirke for 6N.
Number 8? Is there one. Mercer possibly best bet but not on level of an Alldritt, Savea, PSDT, etc.


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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 20 Aug 2023, 2:13 pm

I think I'd probably go with the team that played Ireland. It's always tempting to think others would have done even better but you e got to remember this is just all about fitness si while we shouldnhave won handsomely you can't blame a little rustiness.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 20 Aug 2023, 2:14 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Ok England fans.
Pick 2 England XVs
One from the squad selected by Borthwick
And the other is your own XV from Amy eligible players on the squad or not

From the current squad I'd probably look for;

Genge (c), George, Sinckler
Chessum, Itoje
Lawes, Earl, Curry
Mitchell, Ford
Manu, Marchant
Daly, Steward, Watson

Dan, Marler, Stuart, Ribbans, JWillis, Care, Smith, Lawrence.

I'd be tempted for Marler to start and then let loose Genge on 43 minutes but Lawes was so inept as captain yesterday we need Genge to captain so someone actually talks to the ref.

For the 6N I'd hope for;

Genge, LCD, Sinckler
Chessum, Itoje
Curry, TWillis, Pearson
JVP, Ford/Smith
Kelly/S Atkinson, Lawrence
Freeman, Steward, Watson

George, VRR, Stuart, Martin, Mercer, Warr/Quirke, Smith/Ford, Arundell.

Obviously dependent on form and who retires post the world cup. We do have an issue with the number of tight five players coming through, not as many as we'd like.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 20 Aug 2023, 2:19 pm

mountain man wrote:Agree with Geordie pretty much.
Steward a really good player but England need more from a FB than what he is delivering.
Manu years past best, end of road.
The much praised England scrum just isn't good enough.

Have to get Mitchell in team. And Quirke for 6N.
Number 8? Is there one. Mercer possibly best bet but not on level of an Alldritt, Savea, PSDT, etc.


Yeah cause any other fullback would have magically changed the result.

Mitchell deserves a shot. Youngs played his worst game since the 2019 final, really should be given a seat in the stands after that. Care wasn't great either. I have quite a few reservations about Mitchell but we're scraping the bottom of the barrell so might as well give him a start and see what he can do. He'll struggle to do worse.

Still unsure about the Quirke love in, last season's form means he didn't deserve to be near the international team. He'll need to show quite a bit more next season if he wants to supplant Warr and get his name back ok contention.

Number 8 is a difficult one. Dombrant was given the chance and he butchered it. Starting a new 8 from no experience to world cup ready was going to be tough. Hopefully Billy V is ejected from the squad and T Willis gets the shirt for the world cup. Might be a rough introduction to international rugby but hopefully some longer term benefits will be found from it.

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Post by Yoda Sun 20 Aug 2023, 3:16 pm

Based on the cluster f**k from borthwicks reign and least crap option is Genge, George, sinkler, chessum, itoje, Lawes, earl, ludlum, Mitchell, Smith, Watson, Lawrence, marchant, Arundel, malins.

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Post by lostinwales Sun 20 Aug 2023, 4:24 pm

mountain man wrote:Agree with Geordie pretty much.
Steward a really good player but England need more from a FB than what he is delivering.
Manu years past best, end of road.
The much praised England scrum just isn't good enough.

Have to get Mitchell in team. And Quirke for 6N.
Number 8? Is there one. Mercer possibly best bet but not on level of an Alldritt, Savea, PSDT, etc.


Mercer got player of the year in the T14 so in theory he's not so far off. So much depends on the system and players around anyone that you focus on.

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Post by hugehandoff Sun 20 Aug 2023, 4:54 pm

this maybe just like 2007....Brian Ashton was at odds with his assistant coaches and especially John Wells the forwards coach. The players lost confidence in the rubbish game plan and mixed messages post the thrashing by SA in the group stages. Then the players had their own meeting and sorted it out themselves to famously make the final.

If Borthers has lost the changing room and the players just don't buy into his tactics then maybe these players need to react accordingly...there are enough caps and experience amongst the players to sort this out. No time to waste.

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Post by Geordie Sun 20 Aug 2023, 5:24 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:
mountain man wrote:Agree with Geordie pretty much.
Steward a really good player but England need more from a FB than what he is delivering.
Manu years past best, end of road.
The much praised England scrum just isn't good enough.

Have to get Mitchell in team. And Quirke for 6N.
Number 8? Is there one. Mercer possibly best bet but not on level of an Alldritt, Savea, PSDT, etc.


Yeah cause any other fullback would have magically changed the result.

Mitchell deserves a shot. Youngs played his worst game since the 2019 final, really should be given a seat in the stands after that. Care wasn't great either. I have quite a few reservations about Mitchell but we're scraping the bottom of the barrell so might as well give him a start and see what he can do. He'll struggle to do worse.

Still unsure about the Quirke love in, last season's form means he didn't deserve to be near the international team. He'll need to show quite a bit more next season if he wants to supplant Warr and get his name back ok contention.

Number 8 is a difficult one. Dombrant was given the chance and he butchered it. Starting a new 8 from no experience to world cup ready was going to be tough. Hopefully Billy V is ejected from the squad and T Willis gets the shirt for the world cup. Might be a rough introduction to international rugby but hopefully some longer term benefits will be found from it.

Sam, I'll get ridiculed for saying it (as the world Cup is not a training ground)..but thats what I was actually thinking this world cup is going to be about...for from a few positions. George Maritn, Lawrence, Tom Willis, Theo Dan, Arundell, efc. The experience of a world Cup then hopefully they really kick on and make the core of rhe next world Cup side (with Pearson, Kelly, Atkinson, Hartley,
Chesusm Jr etc) ...whilst battling for all the tournaments in between.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 20 Aug 2023, 5:31 pm

hugehandoff wrote:this maybe just like 2007....Brian Ashton was at odds with his assistant coaches and especially John Wells the forwards coach. The players lost confidence in the rubbish game plan and mixed messages post the thrashing by SA in the group stages. Then the players had their own meeting and sorted it out themselves to famously make the final.

If Borthers has lost the changing room and the players just don't buy into his tactics then maybe these players need to react accordingly...there are enough caps and experience amongst the players to sort this out. No time to waste.

The more I read the more I think we'll get the result of 07 team without the acrimony. The players are obviously loving the games and being together, and that's translating to the pitch.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 20 Aug 2023, 5:32 pm

Geordie wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
mountain man wrote:Agree with Geordie pretty much.
Steward a really good player but England need more from a FB than what he is delivering.
Manu years past best, end of road.
The much praised England scrum just isn't good enough.

Have to get Mitchell in team. And Quirke for 6N.
Number 8? Is there one. Mercer possibly best bet but not on level of an Alldritt, Savea, PSDT, etc.


Yeah cause any other fullback would have magically changed the result.

Mitchell deserves a shot. Youngs played his worst game since the 2019 final, really should be given a seat in the stands after that. Care wasn't great either. I have quite a few reservations about Mitchell but we're scraping the bottom of the barrell so might as well give him a start and see what he can do. He'll struggle to do worse.

Still unsure about the Quirke love in, last season's form means he didn't deserve to be near the international team. He'll need to show quite a bit more next season if he wants to supplant Warr and get his name back ok contention.

Number 8 is a difficult one. Dombrant was given the chance and he butchered it. Starting a new 8 from no experience to world cup ready was going to be tough. Hopefully Billy V is ejected from the squad and T Willis gets the shirt for the world cup. Might be a rough introduction to international rugby but hopefully some longer term benefits will be found from it.

Sam, I'll get ridiculed for saying it (as the world Cup is not a training ground)..but thats what I was actually thinking this world cup is going to be about...for from a few positions. George Maritn, Lawrence,  Tom Willis, Theo Dan, Arundell,  efc. The experience of a world Cup then hopefully they really kick on and make the core of rhe next world  Cup side (with Pearson, Kelly, Atkinson, Hartley,
Chesusm Jr etc) ...whilst battling for all the tournaments in between.

No time for that, we're going there to win. And to do that you need the likes of Cole and Youngs at the front and starting.

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Post by mountain man Sun 20 Aug 2023, 5:55 pm

No FB would have magically changed that result but we'll never know as never got to see.

Sam, you seem to take any reasonable criticism of Steward as a personal insult. I rate him, he's an excellent player but England look totally toothless in attack and FB is one position that gets a lot of ball and is used to counter attack. We're not getting any progress at the moment so why not at least try someone else. Might not work but until it's given a go we'll never know.
Better to die trying than not trying at all.

As for Martin, can't say he impressed at all in the two games against Wales. Now Chessum is back fit I'd definitely give him more time on pitch. Start him and Itoje with Ribbans bench.

As for number 8 I would think Earl will get shirt for Fiji.

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Post by Geordie Sun 20 Aug 2023, 6:15 pm

Martin is a work in progress...develop him at this level and he'll be a massive player.

Chessum Jr, looks something else...so a few years with the tigers in the prem and I hope we see him develop nicely aswell...

We have 3 full backs all offer different strengths and weaknesses.  We need to identify who's weaknesses can be removed the best and who's strengths can be improved the most....

There's still Josh Hodge as well Wink

We desperately need a few tightheads coming through...no more playmaker...just brute strength aggressive tight head props, with a decent mobility. Sinckler and Stuart need thrown out as soon as possible.  

8 / 9 / 10 / 12 - 4 critical positions that should work together....and out of those three...8 / 9 and 12 we don't have a player....and at 10 we don't know who to pick form 3 good players.

Sums it up

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 20 Aug 2023, 6:40 pm

With Steward, I'm more worried about him getting crocked in the first game (it could happen), we're then relying on someone who has tried and been found wanting at full back (Daly) or a player that has no (or very little) experience of playing there at this level. I'm not saying that a couple of warm up games would have made a massive difference, but we could at least have seen that if it would have been a Monye level of awfulness. For the Six Nations I would really like to see Joe Carpenter in the wider squad, he just seems a good all rounder.

I like Martin, the lad is 22 and playing in a physical position in an unsettled team, reckon he'll come good. There are a number of youngs kicking around that I have high hopes for. To be honest, I'm probably showing my age, but seeing lots of Leicester players in the pack fills me with a warm nostalgic glow.

No.8 seems a problem, which is strange because on paper we have a number of very strong options.



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Post by Cumbrian Sun 20 Aug 2023, 6:44 pm

Geordie wrote:Martin is a work in progress...develop him at this level and he'll be a massive player.

Chessum Jr, looks something else...so a few years with the tigers in the prem and I hope we see him develop nicely aswell...

We have 3 full backs all offer different strengths and weaknesses.  We need to identify who's weaknesses can be removed the best and who's strengths can be improved the most....

There's still Josh Hodge as well Wink

We desperately need a few tightheads coming through...no more playmaker...just brute strength aggressive tight head props, with a decent mobility. Sinckler and Stuart need thrown out as soon as possible.  

8 / 9 / 10 / 12 - 4 critical positions that should work together....and out of those three...8 / 9 and 12 we don't have a player....and at 10 we don't know who to pick form 3 good players.

Sums it up

100%, if you look at a lot of the younger props that they are getting game time, they are loose heads.  The ones that I can see that have promise are Heyes at Leicester and Baxter at Quins.  I guess we could go down the Scottish route and find some Engboks! Very Happy
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Post by Poorfour Sun 20 Aug 2023, 7:02 pm

I’m less worried about Steward in attack; if England were creating much in attack, he’d be a good focal point for counterattacks and someone who could come onto the ball at speed in the red zone. Get the attack working and that will come.

Much more worried about his defensive weaknesses. A full back needs to do one or both of controlling the space off the ball to limit attacking options, or being able to cover the ground to close up the gaps. Steward isn’t doing the first effectively at international level, and he lacks the agility and acceleration to do the second. Teams have learned that if they pull him one way and then change direction, he won’t be able to get across fast enough to cover the space. A pendulum defence only works if the wingers and fullback can all get into the right positions to cover each other quickly, and Steward has been caught out repeatedly in red zone defence.

As to whether another full back could have done better, it’s hard to tell, because no-one else has been tried there recently. Daly wasn’t great defensively either, so it’s been a while since England have played a strong defensive and positional fullback.
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Post by Rugby Fan Sun 20 Aug 2023, 7:15 pm

I doubt Borthwick has lost the changing room. Genge, Ford, Steward, Youngs, and Martin worked well with him at Leicester. Marler, Daly, Care and Vunipola made it back into contention, when Jones might have overlooked them if he'd stayed in charge. That's a reasonable core of support, even if others are unsure (and we haven't  heard of any discontent).

One question for me is about leadership. Farrell has been captain for most of the last four years, during which we have gone backwards. He is highly praised for leading by example, and acting as an on-field coach. It's unclear whether he has always bought into the coaching strategy, or has sometimes pushed back, and suggested tweaks.

Whichever, it's hard to think of occasions when his leadership has had a tangible impact. We rarely win a game as underdogs. Russ Petty says or win rate since 2022 against the other current top 10 teams is 29%. That's on a par with Australia, and just a little ahead of Wales and Fiji. Since 2020, our win rate against the same teams is 47%, and the gap between those two percentages is the largest for any side.

It's a clear record of underperformance. Now, you can't always lay that on the captain. Fine leaders like BOD and POC had some misses when expectations were high. Still, it's hard to discern what Farrell has added to the equation. We know it's not referee management.

It did look like Lawes had emerged as a different leadership option, after we managed to win the series in Australia. Since then, he has also seemed anonymous, though he has not had many games to judge his record. Likewise Genge, who was captain for that heavy loss to France.


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Post by carpet baboon Sun 20 Aug 2023, 7:16 pm

Bring back Mike brown

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 20 Aug 2023, 7:20 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Funnily enough this brings up a ghost of an old argument.  The conversation in the 2010s was Brown vs Foden, the safe pair of hands vs. the flair option.
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Post by carpet baboon Sun 20 Aug 2023, 7:24 pm

Cumbrian wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Funnily enough this brings up a ghost of an old argument.  The conversation in the 2010s was Brown vs Foden, the safe pair of hands vs. the flair option.

Both brought something different. Brown was never the quickest, but he wasn't slow and was great positionally.
Foden had a bit of magic about him but could be caught out of position

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 20 Aug 2023, 8:11 pm

Poorfour wrote:I’m less worried about Steward in attack; if England were creating much in attack, he’d be a good focal point for counterattacks and someone who could come onto the ball at speed in the red zone. Get the attack working and that will come.

Much more worried about his defensive weaknesses. A full back needs to do one or both of controlling the space off the ball to limit attacking options, or being able to cover the ground to close up the gaps. Steward isn’t doing the first effectively at international level, and he lacks the agility and acceleration to do the second. Teams have learned that if they pull him one way and then change direction, he won’t be able to get across fast enough to cover the space. A pendulum defence only works if the wingers and fullback can all get into the right positions to cover each other quickly, and Steward has been caught out repeatedly in red zone defence.

As to whether another full back could have done better, it’s hard to tell, because no-one else has been tried there recently. Daly wasn’t great defensively either, so it’s been a while since England have played a strong defensive and positional fullback.

The really good international fullbacks cover the space but they also tend not to be 22 years old. Experience is considered one of the more boring rugby traits but it does come in rather handy. Steward is unlikely to get much quicker or more agile but he has the potential to start filling those positions, he does read the game pretty well already and more exposure at the highest level should help thar. So does a settled side.

For the two tries we conceded on the left hand side Daly is up in the line for both of them, he's really quite tight to his inside man. Two things strike me about that, first is that we didn't have the problem on the other wing where Watson knowing Steward a lot better wasn't going to leave as much space for Ireland to exploit knowing Steward isn't the quickest. Secondly is that Daly has barely played with Steward but has spent the last year playing with the extremely experienced and positionally brilliant Alex Goode. Goode is the kind of player who'd have probably read that was on and been in position earlier. Thirteen years more experience helps with that though. Similarly if Steward knew Daly has a tendency to come in off his wing aggressively on defence he might well get out there earlier anticipating that is where the space might be. Daly really is unnecessarily narrow for Hanson's try though, if anything he's in the way of the centres it's a bad read.

It's similar for the Earls try. Steward is up in the line numbering up as he should be. Care is out of position because at Quins he'd not drop back into the pendulum system. Tigers scrum halfs do that a lot and it's Sinfield's system with England as well. Quick turnover ball from the restart and he isn't naturally dropping into that position.

We got caught narrow for four of Ireland's five tries. Two leaving Steward chasing across one on one in acres of space, one where the long pass left a walk in and the other leaving Care chasing across and never getting there. It's an area we've got to improve before the Pumas game. Admittedly three of those four tries came after we were down a man so it might be a lot easier if we have a full compliment instead of playing the number 1 ranked team with a man down.

You're right about no one else being trialled. Eddie really failed to bring replacements through in the trouble positions post world cup. We knew lock, 8, 9, 12 and 15 were areas we needed options. Ewels and Hill were trialled at lock but otherwise we generally persisted until desperation set in and he just dropped in the standouts from a bumper under 20s year and hoped they swam.

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Post by Unclear Sun 20 Aug 2023, 9:35 pm

carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

To replace Farrell as the pantomime villain the rest of the world loves to hate?  The appeal's not done yet. Whistle

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Post by yappysnap Sun 20 Aug 2023, 9:44 pm

Perhaps after these last games, all those posters and keyboard warriors who stuck the boot into Marcus Smith for the teams play might take a moment of reflection.


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Post by Rugby Fan Sun 20 Aug 2023, 10:05 pm

According to the Telegraph, Jamie George told the referee at the outset that, if he had problems with the England scrum, he should talk to George. Williams apparently replied "You need to stop talking".

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 20 Aug 2023, 10:17 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:According to the Telegraph, Jamie George told the referee at the outset that, if he had problems with the England scrum, he should talk to George. Williams apparently replied "You need to stop talking".

As in he wasn't the captain?

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Post by Rugby Fan Sun 20 Aug 2023, 10:44 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
Rugby Fan wrote:According to the Telegraph, Jamie George told the referee at the outset that, if he had problems with the England scrum, he should talk to George. Williams apparently replied "You need to stop talking".

As in he wasn't the captain?
Not sure, now. I assumed this was at the outset of the game but a closer read indicates it was before the 2nd half kick-off.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 20 Aug 2023, 11:11 pm

Kinda get that from the ref then. Goes to the point of I think Sam's (?) Re a quiet captain.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 21 Aug 2023, 7:06 am

carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Steward makes makes Mike Brown look like Christian Cullen. The problem with Steward is if he's not taking catches, he doesn't offer anything and his glaring weaknesses get highlighted. I honestly don't think he's good enough to be an international fullback.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 21 Aug 2023, 8:23 am

Thing is Borthwick knows these guys better than anyone. I really can't see the sense in ripping up a part of the team so fundamental to our attack. If it wasn't working then fair enough but at the moment it would be bizarre.

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Post by Geordie Mon 21 Aug 2023, 8:27 am

The question is....can Borthwick turn the England side into the type of side the Tigers became?
Possibly...but not with some of these players...and hes going to need time.

And if you do get rid of Borthwick....genuinely...who is there?

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Post by mountain man Mon 21 Aug 2023, 8:40 am

There's a decent chance Fiji could beat England next match, they are so physical and just look to run it all the time that unless Eng sort themselves out it could be a tough afternoon.

As for Borthwick, exactly. Who else is there who is available and wants the poisoned chalice.

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Post by Geordie Mon 21 Aug 2023, 8:51 am

Fiji could very well beat us next....

Marchant missed 5 tackles
Manu, Daly and Youngs all missed 3 each.
Stuart made 2 tackles and missed 1.

Sinckler made 8 tackles missed 0.

Its not really great reading is it.

And Billy made 24m carrying. Isnt he supposed to be in there as our primary carrier

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Post by mountain man Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:06 am

Never mind though, Sir Freddie of Steward is there to save the day!

As if Eng dont have enough problems onfield, all the furore now around Farrell and Billy just adds to the total sh*t pile.

Aside from bunker for the cards, I think England need a bunker mentality. Keep head down, say nothing and work hard.

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Post by Geordie Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:19 am

mountain man wrote:Never mind though, Sir Freddie of Steward is there to save the day!

As if Eng dont have enough problems onfield, all the furore now around Farrell and Billy just adds to the total sh*t pile.

Aside from bunker for the cards, I think England need a bunker mentality. Keep head down, say nothing and work hard.

Honestly...Steward is the least of the problems...hes actually a good player.

We have way bigger issues elsewhere....

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:21 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Steward makes makes Mike Brown look like Christian Cullen. The problem with Steward is if he's not taking catches, he doesn't offer anything and his glaring weaknesses get highlighted. I honestly don't think he's good enough to be an international fullback.

Wow, talking about not watching the game and looking for a scapegoat.

The kid has got a weakness defending space on the outside. No player on either side beat more defenders than he did (some did equal). He's brought some footwork to the party and mixed his returns from the back. England had more territory than Ireland which was down to us winning the kicking battle which Steward was a part of.

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Post by mountain man Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:24 am

Honestly...Steward is the least of the problems...hes actually a good player.

Yep I know that and have said so repeatedly.

In fact FB is about the only position guaranteed.

However, lack of variation is costing England big time. Both in tactics and players.

My entire point is England should and in fact need to try someone else at 15. If Steward goes off injured in first minute against Arg then what. I also think England have better attacking 15s available.

Other opinions are available....

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Post by Yoda Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:41 am

I though Daley missed the most tackles in the backs, didn't realise marchant missed five. I think the backs debate will have to wait as we maybe getting some possession but it is the wrong kind, slow. There was an interesting stat about ruck times on Amazon prime during the game which pretty summed up the respective attacks. We don't know where we are going who we are hitting beyond 2 phases and when we do get the ball we are stationary and just tricking it up. There isn't any footwork before contact nor fighting on the ground to long present. This makes the gate wider and Ireland exploited this perfectly.

As far as I'm concerned this is basic stuff and a change in attitude with a kick up the backside for effort could work wonders. Play everything through Smith or ford (because they are your playmakers) plus ideally another distributer with forwards making decisive runs in units can start to stress defences. It doesn't take much to overload one channel and isolate a defender. One out forward pops from the ruck do not work anymore!

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Post by Geordie Mon 21 Aug 2023, 9:58 am

We do have to remember of course that the Ireland United Nations are a team at their peak...through the cycle...as opposed to where England are....

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:01 am

United Nations?

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Post by Geordie Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:02 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:United Nations?

Yes...the irish, Kiwis and Aussies....

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Post by Big Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:10 am

Mountain man - other opinions are available, but I quite like that one! OK

Geordie - we are at different points and Ireland are just better. For me the score is less worrying than the manner of it. Ireland weren't really near their best, and England (as Yoda suggests) look like more effort would make a big difference. Which is weird, because even when Borthwick was in his early days with Tigers and sending out very young and/or experimental teams that got hammered, 100% effort seemed to be his primary demand of the players and obviously that did pay dividends. I'm slightly bemused by the fact that England have looked more motivated, more willing to play and frankly better at scoring when a man (or more) down. Perhaps if we just tell someone to have the day off and start with 14 we'd do better - maybe even 13 and see if Ford's league heritage kicks in and produces some genius game management.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:11 am

Geordie wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:United Nations?

Yes...the irish, Kiwis and Aussies....

Odd way to look at these days. Don't think they've quite peaked yet looking at the youth coming through.

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Post by doctor_grey Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:13 am

carpet baboon wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Funnily enough this brings up a ghost of an old argument.  The conversation in the 2010s was Brown vs Foden, the safe pair of hands vs. the flair option.

Both brought something different. Brown was never the quickest, but he wasn't slow and was great positionally.
Foden had a bit of magic about him but could be caught out of position
Interesting, though, Foden was fine under kicks, even in  traffic.  Brown, on the her hand, was excellent. Both players one could win with.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:17 am

doctor_grey wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Funnily enough this brings up a ghost of an old argument.  The conversation in the 2010s was Brown vs Foden, the safe pair of hands vs. the flair option.

Both brought something different. Brown was never the quickest, but he wasn't slow and was great positionally.
Foden had a bit of magic about him but could be caught out of position
Interesting, though, Foden was fine under kicks, even in  traffic.  Brown, on the her hand, was excellent.  Both players one could win with.

We went through a nice run of full backs then, starting with Armitage who was massively underrated for me.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:43 am

I thought at a team level England and Ireland weren’t too far apart on tackles made and tackles missed? Sinfield’s system is still vulnerable if teams can get wide fast (and the the first Irish try came from engineering a 3 on 2 close to a ruck, England failing to number off effectively), but it seems to be working better now.

We also need to be careful about whether individual missed tackles are down to the person or the system. England are running a spearhead type defence with the middle of the line pressing up fast to block off the outside channels. The player leading the spear is likely to miss some tackles because their job is primarily to disrupt, with the tackles being closed off by the rest of the line.
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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 21 Aug 2023, 10:54 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:
carpet baboon wrote:Bring back Mike brown

Steward makes makes Mike Brown look like Christian Cullen. The problem with Steward is if he's not taking catches, he doesn't offer anything and his glaring weaknesses get highlighted. I honestly don't think he's good enough to be an international fullback.

Wow, talking about not watching the game and looking for a scapegoat.

The kid has got a weakness defending space on the outside. No player on either side beat more defenders than he did (some did equal). He's brought some footwork to the party and mixed his returns from the back. England had more territory than Ireland which was down to us winning the kicking battle which Steward was a part of.

I can't think of one positive thing that Steward did.....not one, it was an awful performance.

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