Conor Murray thinks Ireland need to reach "another level" to beat England

Doug Mendoza
March 13, 2018

A 22-16 loss to France in Paris has allowed Ireland to seize the crown from Twickenham with a round to spare and on Saturday Joe Schmidt's men travel to London on the brink of a Grand Slam. "In 2017, they were world-beaters and now after two games, they're no good again", Jones added with his familiar wry smile. They are good players and teams have ups and downs.

Johnny Sexton had to wait until November of that year to make his Test debut, but the Leinster fly-half was already providing stiff competition for Ronan O'Gara, whose epic drop-goal against Wales he so dramatically emulated in the win at the Stade de France in February.

"We have a lot of things to do ourselves, training -wise, recovery, and whatever else comes with it is something we can't focus on, got to put aside".

The St. Patrick's Day meeting was earmarked as a Six Nations decider during the early weeks of this year's tournament, but back-to-back defeats at the hands of Scotland and France has left England completely out of contention. We think we know what we have to fix.

The importance of the matchday 23 in the modern game can not be underestimated, with Stander acknowledging: "I think (the replacements) have got a job to do as they get on".

"I think it's a pretty big challenge", admitted the centre.

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Rashford received a rare start from manager Mourinho as it was only the 14th Premier League start for the forward. I would say he was in the top five with more matches for two seasons. "Marcus is having these experiences".

Perhaps the most significant achievement of the likes of O'Gara, Brian O'Driscoll and Paul O'Connell are the players now seeking to match them. Definitely not. I think we've enough knowledge about them and experience to deal with that.

At the same time, England beat Italy in Rome with a bonus-point and Wales did likewise at home over Scotland, placing Ireland third in the table at that point.

Conor Murray says victory for Ireland over England at Twickenham on Saturday would be the greatest of his life, and possibly the greatest in the history of Irish rugby.

"The learnings we'll get from this, albeit very painful, are absolutely crucial going forward because it's about how we respond".

"There is no doubt about it we'll be sitting here next Monday morning and we'll be saying we needed we had to change those gears to go from third/fourth up into fifth for a few occasions and we'll be here as Grand Slam winners".

Guscott said many England players weren't making the right decisions and were giving away far too many penalties.

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