Ireland Squad 2018/2019

Discussion in 'International Test Matches' started by Amiga500, Sep 10, 2018.

  1. snoopy snoopy dog dog

    snoopy snoopy dog dog First XV

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    I don't want to sidetrack the New Zealand demolition of Ireland thread so will reply here @Reiser99
    Looking at 2023:
    Loosehead prop will become an area of concerns the provinces have nobody in their ranks in their 20s putting their hands up at the moment as international class. A wildcard could be shifting either Furlong or Porter to 1.

    Hooker appears to be Niall Scannell's position to lose with Rónan Kelleher taking the Sean Cronin change of pace role.

    Second row will see James Ryan captain the team. There'll be plenty of options beside him.

    Backrow will see quite a bit of change. Dan Leavy will be back in the reckoning. If Ireland want to play a wide game, Max Deegan is the most likely 6/8 to hemp them do so.

    Scrumhalf is a crapshoot.

    At flyhalf, a lot depends on how Harry Byrne develops. If he develops quickly, expect Joey Carbery to move to 15.

    Who knows what'll happen in the outside backs and midfield.

    .............................

    There's a lot to be said for picking in the moment and to hell with the next world cup. Nobody can legislate for the injury and suspension woes Ireland suffered in 2015 and we've just seen where a grand plan building 2019 got Ireland. Pick on form.
     
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  3. Reiser99

    Reiser99 First XV

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    Fair enough replying on here. Yeah I agree about picking on form and it could be argue that was the root of Ireland's problems this year, though definitely not only that. However you also have to target the next world cup and try to keep some experience, whilst also giving newer players a chance. You could keep some 29-31 players around for a couple a years, especially as Farrell identifies who can replace them. However you also don't want to get to the point where your newer players don't have enough time to get the cap and experience they would benefit from. I get it's a hard balancing act. I just think Ireland have a core of players to build around who have shown they should be there in 4 years time.
     
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  4. Leinster Fan

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    Dammit, I type out a super long response and then I come here and you've said all the things I wanted to say except better and with less words. Agreed this is right thread and I'll paste my response from the other thread in here.

    That's a good assessment. I'd be pretty optimistic about 2023 (already falling into the same traps) there's a talented group of players in the current squad and enough young talent coming through to fill in most of the gaps.

    Prop: as you say, potentially an issue at loosehead, all the capped players are 29+, dont think any of them are getting near the next World cup. There are some decent young players around the provinces (especially Ed Byrne and Eric O'Sullivan at Leinster and Ulster respectively) but none of them are future world beaters. There are some very good kids but they're still at schoolboy U19/20 level so too early to tell if there's a solution there really. Hopefully we get another year or two out of Healy while giving time to some younger options and then we can take it from there. Tighthead I'd hope we're sorted long term with Furlong and Porter (who I wouldn't be against moving back to loosehead because I think he's too good to spend his entire career as a backup for Furlong and he's still improving). Nothing special behind those two really but plenty of time for options to emerge.
    Hooker: I'd agree with you that Scannell probably isn't a long term solution but he's good enough to hold the jersey down for a few years at the very least. From what I've seen of Ronan Kelleher I'd be confident saying he's Leinster's long term starter, probably won't be making the Ireland squad for another bit but he's very talented, and McBurnie at Ulster is another very strong prospect to keep an eye on.
    Lock: I think in an ideal world Ryan is captain next time. Henderson and Beirne should both still be around as well. Dillanne went off the boil badly over the last while but has come back to himself and should put himself in the frame. To be honest I'd hope we can do away with the idea that Kleyn is an international lock, we can do much better. Ryan Baird will hopefully have made the grade by then as well.
    Backrow: too many young talents to name, if I try to get them all I'll forget someone so I'll just go with Max Deegan (former world U20 player of the year) and leave it at that. As you say Van der Flier and Conan will still be there, so will potentially Stander. Hopefully Leavy can get back from injury and back to his best, phenomenal player. Overall very excited about this area.
    Scrumhalf: nothing amazing, there are the current options who'll be four years older and then Craig Casey who was ridiculously good for the U20s last year and has the talent to be as good as anyone but not much other than that.
    Outhalf: I'm a huge fan of Harry Byrne (Ross Byrne's younger brother, very different player). Sexton I think is worth at least keeping around for another while but we do need to be developing multiple potential starters from now on. Ross Byrne is limited but very good and is worth international minutes as well. Carbery is obviously the presumed heir to the throne but we'll see what happens.
    Centre: no reason why Henshaw-Ringrose won't still be the best really.
    Back three: Larmour will hopefully be a starter from now on, Stockdale can hopefully get his mojo back, Conway is a decent option. Some young talent but no safe bets to be a future international. Adam Byrne I think should be gunning for an international recall but we'll see what happens.

    Overall a decent core to build around and a lot of young talent to bring in over the next few years.
     
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  5. big ginger 8

    big ginger 8 International

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    Lads forgetting Wycherly's performances at loosehead in the 20s 6N? Also think Milne looks a lot better there since switching back.
     
  6. Leinster Fan

    Leinster Fan First XV

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    Tbf completely forgot about Wycherly, both he and his older brother have big futures.

    Not sold on Milne yet, getting a lot of time for Leinster because Byrne is injured which will stand to him but I can't imagine him playing for Ireland (hope I'm wrong though).
     
  7. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Hall of Fame

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    Not worried about having the players as we do have them but the structures are vital.

    I believe it is hugely important to clear lads like Sexton, Earls, Kearney. Use a bit of medium term planning and lets face it these will not be there in the medium future. I strongly believe Kearney and Sexton will be off at the end of this season (even though contract is until 2021) and Rob will 100% be gone.

    Lads like Healy, POM and to a lesser extent Stander should be rotated and not constant mainstays. The aim is to build a squad. I think Schmidt identified the importance of this but too late. And Irish coaches in the past didn't identify this. It was more a case of tunnel vision. I should also throw Murray in to the bracket with Healy etc. But his place should be under threat regardless.
     
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  8. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Fat Boi

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    Going for a hybrid of short term success with an eye to the world cup, which of course failed miserably in bringing world cup success in the last two attempts I think the following should be followed. I do think this is a bit more aggressive than previous cycles.

    Never to play for Ireland again - Kearney and Earls, we have younger options that are just as good and will force a change in style, no point hanging on to anything from the Schmidt era and these are the two most "Schmidt" players you can find. Neither had a bad world cup but neither were ever going to be a point of difference against quality opposition even if we did impose out old dominating style on anyone. Best obviously falls into this bracket too.

    Phased out by this time next year at the latest - POM, Healy and Sexton, two leaders so it might be a bit unwise to throw them out immediately, and if we're going for a massive shake up in style you probably want Johnny around to show Carbery and the Byrnes how it's done. But even when playing well this tournament both these two looked old and done, One last 6n isn't beyond either but for Peter it should be as a bench option and nothing more if we actually need him, and if Farrell doesn't think he needs Johnny than leave him with Leinster too, I just don't have much faith in the incumbents yet. Healy is a bit different, if Jack is back playing well for Ulster, great throw him in but while Kilcoyne is a brilliant bench option his scrum at this level has been found wanting, especially as a starter so he needs time to get to work there.

    Phased out post Lions tour at the latest - Stander, no way he lasts until 2023 with his style but to be fair to him he's the only guy to go up in my estimations this world cup, worth keeping around in some capacity even if he's not in our best backrow come the 6n. Conway, top class international wings, which Conway isn't anyway, are rarely over 30, 32 at the next world cup is too old for Conway to get away with. Aki, 33 for the next world cup, no thanks.

    Murray should be watched extremely closely too and, as with everyone on this list, he should only start if deemed better than his competition based on the next 6 months of rugby played.

    I'm a bit disappointed that we gave the job straight to Farrell without watching how we went this year because I think we're desperate for a coach who knows how to go deep in a world cup and Farrell hasn't got bags of experience there coming off his best world cup to date where we didn't fire a shot... But it's not all about world cups and I wouldn't trade half of the success Joe had for a semi final, it'll be nice to forget about world cup rugby for a couple of years. The only time the world cup should cross Farrell's mind should be in my proposed new criteria for not selecting a player, the "if he was a kiwi and didn't have it so comfortable in a province would he have retired to France or Japan by now?" standard, it'd get rid of literally every player here so I'm contradicting myself a wee bit but the short term pain might just lead to success "when it matters". It all depends on how aggressive big Faz wants to be I suppose, I hope he's totally ruthless.

    A few things Farrell needs to do:
    Use his back three to attack, fairly obvious this one. Schmidt always preferred kicking and defensive back threes in his 9 years here, for Leinster it worked, it was solid for Ireland and when Stockdale was in a vein of form where giving him the ball would result in a try it helped us be the best, it left us totally unable to nick a tight game or keep us in a one sided one at other times however, most notably the end! With back three options of Larmour, Carbery, Stockdale, Conway, Addison and Lowe all available in the next 12 months this should be a fairly natural progression.

    Develop around 10 million international backrows. We thought we were stacked, it was our biggest weakness in the end, injuries are so common here you can never have enough. If Max Deegan had have had 5 caps prior to the tournament at worst you have another destructive option at 6 or 8.

    **** experience, if Ronan Kelleher looks the best hooker in the country for Leinster and is still a bit raw, pick him anyway. While I think Hansen was just rubbing it in our faces when he banged on about "winning experience v losing experience" he also showed that experience across the board counts for shite, Smith and Barrett are looking after an inexperienced backline on their own, experience will come naturally in some areas and not in others, don't let it be a factor that gets Dave Kearney, who wasn't going to travel in any circumstances, into a preliminary squad over someone like Adam Byrne who could have torn it up and got himself in as a bolter.

    In 2018 I think Joe showed us how good we can be, 2019 he showed us where our current biases get us to in a set four year cycle, **** needs to change. I won't hold my breath though.
     
  9. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Hall of Fame

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    On a few of these I'd start at the top.

    100% agree with the top paragraph.

    On the 2nd - On POM. Exactly. A bench option who can give a big 20 mins in terms of leadership and a boost for final 20 and is still around the squad. Sexton in the same should be a bench option who is around the squad but is not even relied on much but can fill in. Sexton is older than many think and has declined alot in the past year. Also physically I do wonder where he is at after the bangs etc. This isn't a reflection saying he is not good enough but is on his last legs to an extent he is being minded very carefully. With Healy - the penalties have started to creep in again and it is now him and not Kilcoyne who is a bit of a liability again in this area. But regardless is 31 this year. Only a year younger than Healy. It's more looking at younger options and giving them the time to develop.

    Murray will have to play out of his skin to stay with Munster as a starter. Alby is on fire. And ok he is here short term but if Conor doesn't buckle up Nick McCarthy may not make it to same levels but has started the season superb and Casey is lurking too.

    CJ is a different beast. He will still play the same way at next RWC and I bet still be at the standard. His stats showed what I could see and he was a monster vs New Zealand and to be fair usually does show up. But again I base my reasoning for keeping him on the performances remaining consistently high. As there is plenty coming through. In Munster we have at least 3 or 4 options. Leinster have similar and Connacht have a batch. So if they are performing then they are worthy of consideration.
    Which leads me to the last bit and I 100% agree that form should be the marker.

    Schmidt did many great things for Ireland. But the big blot on the copy is he holds the 2 worst performances in RWC QF's in 2019 & 2015.
    This is down to the gameplan was not developed to continue evolving. And also there was no plan B.
    But also Alpha on the point of Dave Kearney over Adam Byrne etc - The other restriction here is national contracts and types of provincial contracts.
    Like if Dave K was only ever brought in to be a number in the squad until he was cut then he may have been seen as the less expensive option to bring in for that role. As I know it has happened in the past so effectively a player may not even get the chance to bolt as they are seen as a more costly when you factor in addons they may have built in.
     
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  10. The Alpha Bro

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    Thought Kilcoyne was younger, a few loosies need to put their hands up fast!

    The DK point is interesting, I think Farrell will be a good man to deal with it if it's a genuine issue. I reckon Joe definitely could have been persuaded on minor things like that, Farrell seems more bullish and belligerent which Irish rugby needs right now.

    Only pertinent point of disagreement is Stander, 33 is old and Stander is known as a workhorse. He's only human and I think it's far more likely that he'll go the way of SOB and Leamy before him than be a genuine challenger to Jack Conan, Max Deegan, Caelan Doris, Jack O'Donoghue or any one of the talented 20s crop as a 6 or 8 in 4 years time. Time waits for no one! If I'm wrong, I'm wrong but the signs are there already.

    FWIW I'd probably rate 03 and 11 as worse QFs than 15 and equally as bad as Saturday. In 2015 we fired a shot and weren't dead at half time, can't say the same for 03 and 11 which were choke jobs like Saturday. The world cup is obviously going to be marked against Schmidt as a coach in general, but not as an Ireland coach yet, he's as good as any of the shite we've thrown out in this tournament so far and better than Eddie and Gatland were with us.

    Its only natural to have a post mortem now but I don't know how fair it is, I just think Joe lost his intense focus when it mattered most at the very end, it's human. No Irish coach ever had five years of continuous success like Schmidt, just because he went as bad as any before him in his 6th year doesn't stop him from being peerless.
     
  11. Tigs Man

    Tigs Man Hall of Fame

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    @The Alpha Bro did you write this?
    https://www.irishtimes.com/sport/ru...-schmidt-rattled-rugby-s-true-elite-1.4056883

    "He shook up the world order. Altered the way Irish rugby is perceived from Samoa to Bloemfontein. He gifted the most important people in the game - volunteers who coach children - a blueprint that could in time be published as The Gospel according to Joe."

    [​IMG]

    Don't get me wrong Schmidt is a great coach but please.
    "Schmidt rattled rugby’s true elite. He forced the All Blacks and England to improve. He turned almost everyone into a believer."

    What sort of love song is this?
     
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  12. The Alpha Bro

    The Alpha Bro Fat Boi

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    Cummisky is a strange man. Like now is not the time to discredit what Schmidt has achieved, but there's nothing that warrants a complimentary epitaph be written. He finished his career in a rut devoid of focus, making our rivals better doesn't sound like a clever thing to do in light of that whatever the degree of truth.

    No one in Irish media has a clue whatever side of the glass being half full or empty they are. Apart from Andy Dunne, he's a bit of an oracle.
     
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  13. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Hall of Fame

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    But as I said 33 is not old enough to be a squad player and a 33 year old is not totally unrealistic BUT he has to be at a high level consistently and be the better option than the others. Not there as he has been a steady hand all these years. Yes if it's clear and obvious he is declining then cut him.

    On Schmidt. Yes he had success and is our most successful coach. But the stats are he has failed at the last 2 RWC's. But he isn't the 1st Irish coach to do that. The issues are we had no plan B, didn't develop a squad and remained too loyal to players. And while we were successful it is still we want to beat the All Blacks and SA in meaningful games not just Chicago or Autumn internationals when sometimes the NZ mentality is on developing more than achieving. And that is not a pop at Joe as he was probably our most successful at trying to develop depth, beat NZ twice when no Irish national team did before and won 6Nations more than once.
    It's more that as a nation we have to evolve with the game or we will end up like Scotland.

    The challenge is more to appreciate Schmidt brought us up a level but that has to be adapted and built on again.
     
  14. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Hall of Fame

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    Cummiskey is a fraud. And a grade A idiot to go with it.
     
  15. Leinster Fan

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    I hate Eddie O'Sullivan and love Joe Schmidt but over the last 12+ months he's been guilty of some of the same 'undroppables' school of thought. We had our team for this WC picked the day the grand slam was won and no matter how terrible things got (and they got pretty terrible, multiple thrashings by England, a nightmare game against Wales, losing to Japan, even mediocre games against Argentina, Scotland, Italy) nothing could change that. The only real effort to change anything seemed to be to give Conan more time but that happened about two years too late and I doubt he'd have started the quarter final anyway. Other than that, we dropped a horribly out of form Jack McGrath and that's more or less it (Henshaw at fullback deserves points for invention but was a terrible idea from the start).

    It's tempting to just throw the entire old guard out now and rebuild up from scratch but that would be the wrong move I think. Healy (in part because there's no one else), POM, Sexton and Kearney are all worth being involved in the Six Nations. The above other three are worth minor roles and showing others the ropes there's a lack of experience for other options in their positions. Not a fan of them potentially starting though. Best thing for Sexton's career lasting might be to focus solely on Leinster.

    From the current squad the only players I'd never play for Ireland again are Earls (old, not worth the time, plenty of other options just as deserving) and Cronin (love the guy but it's time). I'd put Toner in that bracket as well, wouldn't recall him even if he tears it up with Leinster (would say I'm backing up most if the country on this one in fairness). Jack McGrath as well barring a serious return to form, shouldn't make even an extended squad really.

    One thing I would do is make James Ryan captain, and make him captain now. Not a fan of the 'give it to someone else for a few years while he gets older' school of thought. The guy we want to be captain at the next world cup should be captain now, and if that isn't James Ryan I don't know who is. He'll get a chance to grow into the role if he gets it now, making him captain in 2021 or whatever leaves with he problem of taking it off whoever has it (who could be doing an exemplary job) and with the risk that he won't adapt to it in the short space of time we give him.

    Potential 23 to start the Six Nations?

    1) Healy (hard to look past him and Killer as the best options, reckon we could be serious stuck here in a few years, is there a single capped loosehead under the age of 29?)
    2) Scannell (would hope somebody overtakes him but good enough to take on the shirt for a few years)
    3) Furlong
    4) Henderson
    5) Ryan (captain)
    6/8) Anyone's guess. Pick on form. No one deserves a guaranteed spot. If Deegan or whoever is playing well enough throw them in
    7) Josh van der Flier (no other fit 7 is close to him)
    9) Again, form. If Murray is the best performing scrumhalf between now and then start him, otherwise just pick the best option, be that Cooney, Marmion, McGrath or someone else
    10) Carbery (he isn't Sexton and is the only one with enough caps to step in right away) would trust Ross Byrne to step up if asked
    11) Stockdale if he finds some form, otherwise no.
    12) Henshaw
    13) Ringrose
    14) Conway
    15) Larmour (entire back theee with the caveat that we should really just pick whoever is looking good for their provinces), Carbery should be an option here as well

    16) Herring (wouldn't hesitate to bring Kelleher in if he's playing well enough though)
    17) Kilcoyne (see above, unless we see a big push from Ed Byrne or Eric O'Sullivan it's too early to change)
    18) Porter
    19) Beirne
    20) see above
    21) same
    22) Sexton probably but wouldn't say no to Ross Byrne
    23) not even worth trying
     
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  16. The Alpha Bro

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    I think Joe did fantastically well at building a squad, using it in 2019 was where he failed, like if you look at the guys flying home, with the exception of Rory Best and Jack Carty there's no one out of their depth in a tier 1 international, a bunch who are massively out of form though. Dropping Larmour for Henshaw in the first game of the year was a terrible sign in hindsight and it was pretty ugly at the time too, Larmour looked better than Kearney this world cup while Henshaw will never play fullback again in his life. It was the first time Joe trusted one individual over another and it being 100% the objectively wrong call that would not lead to any short or long term gain. Give Larmour that match and he may have found the sort of form he showed this month in March and be a legitimate option instead of Kearney.

    What's most disappointing for me is that Joe knew that he could throw players in at the deep end and they'd swim, Ryan played his first professional, senior game for Ireland, Carbery's 8th or 9th pro game was for Ireland, Ringrose was a top performer in his first ever cap, as were Bundee, Stockdale and CJ just to name a few from this world cup cycle and yet when there were clear problems with the backrow and halfbacks no one but the incumbents were considered and the less said about hooker the better. Max Deegan was a Leinster stand out this year, not given a sniff at a squad, Ross Byrne was discarded after a disaster that was far more the coaching staff's fault than his own, Marmion who was part of teams that had beaten England and NZ at the end of record breaking winning streaks could have been averaging 10 tries a game and not got past Murray, I'm sure you could point me to Munster guys who were watching these games thinking they could do better too. Something happened in 2019, whether Joe panicked, became overwhelmed, ran out of ideas or a mix of all three and he went full Eddie O'Sullivan 2007 as a result of it, I'm so dejected.

    With all that said, at the end of 2018 the squad was in rude health, multiple players in most positions, a proven back up for Murray had been found and Carbery looked to be on his way too at 10, considering 5 players who had potential to be in the 23 in Heaslip, Zebo, Ryan, Jackson and Olding had all gone for various reasons too building the squad before the plot was lost in 2019 was a huge strength of Joe's.

    Apart from that I more or less agree, I don't like the phrase "no plan B", I think its a soft way of saying we're not as good as whoever just beat us. You see expansive teams becoming more conservative and grinding out wins but you never see a conservative team go all Fiji to win a game. Schmidt's game plan could have worked, I definitely believe that considering Wales have reached a semi final using a far more restrictive style of play but when you look at the players available to us and we could have done more and if Andy Farrell isn't considering getting the Ross Byrne, Joey Carbery dual playmaker show on the road after the match just gone he's not worth his salt in my opinion. Anyway, its done now, we have the players to return to the top 4 at the next opportunity, and we can produce them as well as any team not playing this weekend and better than one of them, lets hope Joe was just John the Baptist and Faz is beefy Jesus and we go all Old Testament on France 2019.
     
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  17. munstermuffin

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    But as I said this is not a Schmidt thing. And I agree he attempted to build a squad but not fully to the best. Could guys like Tom Farrell have got a better shot. Not saying Schmidt was wrong here more alot of what ifs. It's more things also like Henshaw at 15. I remember saying here he would fail badly there and many others agreed. Your whole body is built in a seperate way. And it's not Joe's biggest sin. Joe was not afraid to cap guys early in career but more that these were in tests vs big nations in November or so. But he was afraid to do it in the high pressure games like the RWC meaningful games. And he's not the 1st and won't be the last.

    Like being brave - Murray would have been dropped in my eyes. I'd argue though Luke McGrath was never the man to be #2. Cooney or Marmion. They were the form players and more consistent.
    POM could have been dropped. I wouldn't have myself but equally was consistent in saying if he was I could understand it.
    And it was more a case of yes we got guys in but when pressure came in meaningful games there was a fear of change. Like Conan and CJ look like an effective duel threat but well injury meant we will not know if that hard call would've been made.
    Also as I said Schmidt is not the 1st to fail big time at a RWC for us. And questions are how come we consistently loose form for a RWC. Is it we try over cook camps, lock lads away, not expose them to enough contact or something else.

    I will say - we had no plan B, we had so many loosing form and we are nowhere near adaptable and struggle to chase a game. And this is not a Joe Schmidt era thing but an Irish problem longer than him. That is what has to change. We certainly have the players and yes there should be a Ross Byrne/ Joey option, then days where you need a lump like Henshaw/Aki at 12. Like adapt. I believe Schmidt recognized this also and Kleyn was picked with that mentality but the penny dropped to late for Joe in the approach. And he seems to be the first Irish coach to at least acknowledge that change was required. So as I said hopefully the fresh ideas coming in and lessons learned from Joe make the new coaching team more of a weapon.
     
  18. Reiser99

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    Thing is that after winning the Grand Slam and beating NZ in 2018, I don't think anyone expected so many of the Irish squad to have such a drop in form within a year. Schmidt goes into the 6N's knowing that some players haven't played as well at club level or have been injured, but it would have been extremely harsh to drop them after the AI's. After the 6N's you've then only got the warm ups and so Schmidt either has to gamble on playing some new younger/fringe players without experience or hope that his established players come good. Hindsight is a wonderful thing and while he could have maybe played one or two players a bit more I can't see making large squad changes just before the world cup as justifiable. Maybe if the whole process had happened a year earlier in 2017, so that 2018 was the year when the form dropped, then Schmidt could have addressed it with squad changes, but for me a 6N's and 4 warm up games just before the WC is not enough time to risk playing unproven players.

    For me the issue is less about the selection and why so many Irish players had a drop in form and could anything have been done about it? It's a hard question to answer and clearly Schmidt didn't have an answer either.
     
  19. munstermuffin

    munstermuffin Hall of Fame

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    I would agree on this bit. I do think Joe wasn't brave to make the form calls. But no coach ever has been. And the dips in form are an issue. Equally are our highs more a gap because others have their dips then.
    As I say it never was a Joe Schmidt issue here as this issue predates him. It's more a case of how do we get this right going forward.
     
  20. Amiga500

    Amiga500 First XV

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    I'd say on the rate of progress Eric O'Sullivan is making, he should be in the conversation soon enough.


    On the wider issue - we need to look at where the game is going and where it might be in 3 years.

    A number of us in the past have been looking for a 2nd pivot playing at 15. I was calling for Payne at 15 for donkeys. Joe gave him one game, then back to type. Carbery at 15 showed well in the past. Yet Joe went back to Type.

    If Steve Hansen can see fit to move a two time world player of the year out of his favoured position of 10 and into 15 to give a 2nd pivot... maybe, just maybe, there is something in it.

    But that is now 2019. In 2023 where will we be? 3 playmakers? 10, 12 & 15? Something else?

    Either way, Conway and Larmour are not going to be the answer at 15, as that is now obsolete rugby. To beat current international defences you need to be able to move the ball at least 50 yards in 2 passes (after the initial pass from ruck) to the outside edge. England have Ford and Farrell. The ABs have Mo'unga and Barrett (and half their other players). Wales don't and will struggle as a result. SA have Le Roux to a degree but will also struggle to an extent.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
  21. Leinster Fan

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    All things being equal I'd have him in the Six Nations squad assuming things mostly stay the same, hope you guys back him ahead of McGrath.
     
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