6 Nations 2020

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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Sionnach » January 15th, 2020, 9:06 pm

Couldn’t agree more. I was totally stumped as to why he was selected for the RWC squad, and then basically not used. I love Joe like any Leinster supporter, but that was one decision he made that looked weird at the time and was weird. You’d generally trust he had a plan for him, and maybe he did, but it didn’t look like it.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby blockhead » January 15th, 2020, 9:18 pm

Kleyn has a neck scan this week and remains a doubt for saturday. Doubt this has anything to do with his non selection.
Fez was saying this morning that he thinks Andy likes the athletic type rugby player.
May cast light on the selections of O'Donughue (who is playing very well atm) over Ruddock, Dilane over Kleyn, Killer over McGrath and so on.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » January 15th, 2020, 9:38 pm

I've been paying close attention to Kleyn since the World Cup selection and can kind of see what he brings to the table now. The problem is that he's incredibly inconsistent and doesn't have a big engine, and even in games where he plays well (like on Sunday in parts) he gives away stupid penalties or makes a mess of something on the ball. If you're a nuts and bolts player like him then you've got to be able to do it week in week out for 80 minutes, but he just doesn't offer that.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby FLIP » January 16th, 2020, 9:00 am

Not looking forward to seeing POM at 6 and Stander at 8 again. Was hoping that new coach would mean an end to that.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby jimbobjoe » January 16th, 2020, 10:52 am

FLIP wrote:Not looking forward to seeing POM at 6 and Stander at 8 again. Was hoping that new coach would mean an end to that.


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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby johng » January 16th, 2020, 11:44 am

My guess is that one of them will lose out. But who knows?
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby FLIP » January 16th, 2020, 11:46 am

johng wrote:My guess is that one of them will lose out. But who knows?


Lots of the talk I'm seeing suggests otherwise. The more sensible looking ones are Stander at 6 with one of Doris or Deegan at 8. Plenty still with Stander at 8 and Deegan at 6.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby fourthirtythree » January 16th, 2020, 11:47 am

Lack of specialist sixes in the squad (Rhys missing out) and quite a few eights... You have to think Deegan or Doris will get a run at 8 sometime given that both are there. For my mind 8 is the best position for JOD also. I'm not sure it's Stander's best position though.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby dropkick » January 16th, 2020, 12:23 pm

blockhead wrote:Kleyn has a neck scan this week and remains a doubt for saturday. Doubt this has anything to do with his non selection.
Fez was saying this morning that he thinks Andy likes the athletic type rugby player.
May cast light on the selections of O'Donughue (who is playing very well atm) over Ruddock, Dilane over Kleyn, Killer over McGrath and so on.



Yeah it might explain some decisions.


“It’s a tremendous group,” said Farrell of his squad. “It’s dynamic, it’s powerful, it’s aggressive, it’s got a lot of skill, it’s got a lot of speed in there as well and we want to see all of those.”


Dynamic, powerful, aggressive, speed, skill.
It looks like he has a clear picture of what he wants to do. Looks like he wants to speed up the way the team plays.


Ruddock and Scannell are not the fastest players so might not suit his gameplan.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Oldschool » January 16th, 2020, 12:29 pm

Farrell has been quite shrewd in his squad selection.
He's delayed the outrage until he selects the 23 for the Scotland game.
He's selected a stop gap captain, probably to give James Ryan another season to bed in and not have to deal with the transition. This season is a poison chalice for the captain if Farrell decides it's time to change the guard.
For example supposing POM or Murray don't make the 23 or are only selected on the bench you can imagine the subject matter of the first question the captain will be fielding.
His non selection of McCloskey is not a form decision but it is an indication that a certain skill level is a minimum requirement.
Farrell was an inside centre himself, an extremely skilful one at that.
Toner was a no brainer so Farrell has demonstrated that he's not locked into the past.
Cooney was another no brainer, he's playing better than any other SH in the country and he's a better passer than the rest as well. JGP's omission is a surprise given the inability of Murray to pass quickly and the quality or lack of McGrath's pass.
Slightly surprised Jack McGrath made it but at least his curve is on the up again.
The younger players being given a bit of squad exposure is interesting.
The assumption is that these are the positions that Farrell considers to be where we're a bit light in terms of depth, be it due to injury profiles, age, long term loss of form etc.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Peg Leg » January 16th, 2020, 2:12 pm

dropkick wrote:
blockhead wrote:Kleyn has a neck scan this week and remains a doubt for saturday. Doubt this has anything to do with his non selection.
Fez was saying this morning that he thinks Andy likes the athletic type rugby player.
May cast light on the selections of O'Donughue (who is playing very well atm) over Ruddock, Dilane over Kleyn, Killer over McGrath and so on.



Yeah it might explain some decisions.


“It’s a tremendous group,” said Farrell of his squad. “It’s dynamic, it’s powerful, it’s aggressive, it’s got a lot of skill, it’s got a lot of speed in there as well and we want to see all of those.”


Dynamic, powerful, aggressive, speed, skill.
It looks like he has a clear picture of what he wants to do. Looks like he wants to speed up the way the team plays.


Ruddock and Scannell are not the fastest players so might not suit his gameplan.
You can't play a fast game without explosive players who can put a defensive line on the back foot though. Neither Stander or POM have been offering that lately.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby backrower8 » January 16th, 2020, 3:13 pm

I don’t have a good feeling about Farrell as Head Coach.

I hold him partially responsible, more than is generally said publicly, for not challenging Joe Schmidt effectively across 2019. No easy task, but there was no evidence that Farrell tried to rein him in.

Then this selection has too many negatives. If Devin’s omission was a clanger and evidence of Joe’s antennae being out of whack, then Farrell omitting Ruddock and leaving POM & CJ as the only potential 6s is Farrell’s équivalent cock-up and evidence of Farrell’s flawed thinking. There is no evidence-based reason for both those players to be picked ahead of Rhys in that squad.

Then there is the widely circulated IRFU video interview with Farrell where he waxes lyrical about the form of ”the provinces” and how the squad selection was form-based. Well sorry but Connacht, Munster, POM & CJ are all evidence of that not being true.

His first point was that having challenged them to do so at the ‘stocktake’ session that the players had really picked themselves by dint of their performances since then! Nothing to do with him like. That’s weak.

He also talked about the squad in the way a pundit might- “…it’s got a bit of everything really, experience and a sprinkling of youth” or words to that effect. Just what the Doctor ordered, or public demanded. So Rob and Cronin have been sacrificed. Dev in for Jean Klyne is very popular, Max AND Caelan AND JOD and Bob’s your Uncle. Most of the RWC QF 23 ride again.

Finally the Captaincy. Giving it to Sexton has to be questioned on the basis that he is only 50-50 to play in any game as his injury rate is high. The likelihood is that the Captaincy will need to be shared by at least one other because of this. If squad captaincy of an International team, which plays internationals across 3 interrupted blocks of matches and is the flagship and money earner for the sport nationally, is important then the Captain should have a high probability of playing most of the matches (through selection first and injury profile second) AND be likely to be available for at least 2 more years. Johnny is neither.

To me all this says that Farrell is tinkering (as opposed to genuine change) and that Johnny is such an Alpha/Diva that he had to be given it or he would stink the place out/ be undermining of a younger Captain like Ryan (POM/ CJ/ Murray/ aren’t good options as they aren’t sure of their places).

Imagine if, in a year’s time when Johnny is 35 we want to relieve him of the Captaincy because he is under pressure or even drop him? That would create turmoil as we know that Johnny the 10 won’t go quietly unless he retires (he signed a 2 year contract a little while ago so I doubt he will) and sacking Johnny the Captain would be more akin to getting a rifle out of Charlton Heston’s ‘cold dead hand’’

I would have gone for Ryan but I see that for him personally a bit more time would be nice, but Drico and Sam Warburton overcame those issues at the same stage.

I don’t know the guy. We all want him to go well (I certainly have no suggestions for who else might realistically coach Ireland other than Stu and I don’t want that) but I don’t have a good vibe about Farrell for all these reasons and bunches and the fact that he has never been a #1 coach.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Ruckedtobits » January 16th, 2020, 3:18 pm

Stander a No 6 in this Squad. Doris & Deegan No 8s. Josh the sole 7. PO'M &JO'D the bench options who allow changes in back-row and line-out performances.

Four very serious Props and all hungry. Herring to start with Kelleher benching. Dev a starter or not in Squad. Henderson needs to find consistency of performance. Dillane a perfect bench option with high energy in carrying which is now international standard.

Henshaw & Ringrose automatic selections. Addison possibly FB subject to fitness. Stockdale nailed on but right wing open.

So, decisions at Full-back, Right wing, Scrum-half, one Second Row and No 8. Lots of competition in those areas.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Experimental » January 16th, 2020, 11:45 pm

Even with my blue tinted glasses on, i still cant see for the life of me why McCloskey wasnt included, especially considering his two halfback partners are there. Is it another 'face doesnt fit' scenario? I would have been quite critical of McCloskey in the past, but he really does seem to have stopped making those mistakes he was making which were killing his chances before. Is it possible that he is not 'versatile' enough? Would agree with others that Ruddock should have been in before O'Mahony, but maybe not CJ. CJ and Ruddock are quite similar players, probably a toss of a coin between them. O'Toole and McGrath lucky to be there, Marty Moore has been playing some good rugby, but I agree with Keith Wood that he needs to get fitter and the international door may open again. Not sure why Cronin was overlooked, and I honestly think Kleyn is playing better rugby than Dillane, Dillane very lucky to be there. Happy with the rest, delighted about the development player idea, though I would have brought in a 5th in McBurney (we need more hooker options bad). Captaincy too early for Ryan, needs to have a good year again imo to prove hes worthy.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby ronk » January 17th, 2020, 12:50 am

There's no point in a 5th centre.

Faz has kept a small core of players who will be too old for the next RWC. Depth makes it harder to drop them right now: Sexton, Earls, Toner, POM. There's an urgency around getting experience for Kearneys replacement.

Toner, J McGrath, Cooney are back because there isn't the hard stop on squad size.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Dave Cahill » January 17th, 2020, 1:21 am

If I were going to pick a 5th centre, which I wouldn't but if I were, it wouldn't be Stuart McCloskey. He is very limited. I'd rather have Rory Scannell or (if fit) Tom Farrell
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby hugonaut » January 17th, 2020, 9:15 am

Dave Cahill wrote:If I were going to pick a 5th centre, which I wouldn't but if I were, it wouldn't be Stuart McCloskey. He is very limited. I'd rather have Rory Scannell or (if fit) Tom Farrell


Cannot understand Chris Farrell being in there in the first place. He is playing dreadful rugby and still has really significant frailties in terms of passing left-to-right and a non-existent kicking game, but he seems to have become entrenched in the squad.

Two clean breaks in seven games, averages less than 20m/game and just over 3 passes/game as an outside centre, 1 offload in those 7 games, all of them 80 minute efforts [source: https://www.munsterrugby.ie/player?PlayGuid=CF136427 ] ... they're below ordinary numbers. He's not getting it done at all. Vakatawa ate him alive last weekend to boot, absolutely victimised him.

Luke Marshall is playing a hell of a lot better than Chris Farrell this weather [source: https://www.ulsterrugby.com/player?PlayGuid=LM859773 ] - passing and offloading more, making more metres/game and just adding a whole lot more to a more successful team.

My preferred option would be [like DC] Tom Farrell, who looks like such a threat - quick feet, a two-way step, really good mid-range pace, balance, a huge fend and that intuitive off-loading game. Every time I see him play he impresses me as a No13. Marshall is a more rounded footballer, like a Crotty-type centre, but Farrell has something of Jaque Fourie about him ... big and quick and with a skillset that revolved around his natural athleticism.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » January 17th, 2020, 1:11 pm

I think we could do with someone who can cover 10 and 12 and give a playmaking option outside of 10. I'm hoping that Ireland copy what Leinster have done with Ringrose and move him to 12 a bit and get Robbie in more space. But if Ringrose is injured who can play that role? Joey can do it from fullback but we can't rely on him to be fit and and it just seems like an obvious gap in the squad to me.

Frawley is the guy who springs to mind. I'm not suggesting that he should be playing in the six nations, but maybe he could have been named as a development player and certainly long term he could be an option. I really don't want us to focus on the World Cup but at the same time I think we could do certain things to prepare for it.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby Oldschool » January 17th, 2020, 9:02 pm

The issue for fans at the moment is that we don't know what way Farrell wants Ireland to play.
The squad that he has named gives him a lot of room to manoeuvre.
A BR of POM, JVDF and CJ would be a completely different proposition to a BR of CJ, JVDF and Deegan.
What defensive system will Farrell use? Joe's or his own?
Are they necessarily the same, again we just don't know.
Presumably Farrell has to plan for player succession.
There's no (definitive) indication from the squad that he has selected as to what he has in mind.
He's certainly keeping everyone guessing until at least he selects his 23 for the Scotland game.
Although making Sexton his captain suggests he's going to let him take the flack (no better man) for any of the "faithful" who might be jettisoned.
It might also mean that he plans to give Ryan the captaincy next season with a clean sheet.
We can only hope on that one.
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Re: 6 Nations 2020

Postby sunshiner1 » January 19th, 2020, 2:54 am

If he wanted to pick a Damian Browne type he could have picked Roux who is actually a decent footballer. Kleyn's reputation after the RWC needs a lot of rehab so not surprised he's nowhere close to the squad injury or not. O'Toole is a surprise to me while I rate him highly if he wanted mobility Bealham does the same thing and has more experience. Glad to see Balcoune getting some training with the squad.
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