Live

Repeat: OTB AM

05:00 AM-07:00 AM

Repeat: OTB AM
Advertisement

Sport

Ireland risk complacency in search of continuity with team selection

Ruaidhri O'Connor broke down the stubbornness of the Irish coaching staff ahead of the second New Zealand test.



Ruairi O'Connor joined Off The Ball to react to Ireland's team announcement for the second test in New Zealand.

Ireland played well for 30 minutes in the first test against New Zealand.

It all fell apart during the final 10 minutes of the first half. New Zealand didn't score in the second half, but all Ireland could do was make the score less flattering in their favour. Andy Farrell will point to the performance of his team rather than the scoreline to justify picking largely the same group of players for the second test.

Mack Hansen replaced Keith Earls in the starting 15. Rob Herring and Finlay Bealham take their spots on the bench.

While Farrell can argue this is Ireland's best team, it's not a form team nor is it a team that diverges from last week's performance in anyway. Hansen brings physicality that Earls doesn't, but that alone shouldn't change the pattern of the performance.

Ruaidhri O'Connor explained Andy Farrell's thinking.

"Andy Farrell is there to win," O'Connor said.

"He firmly believes this is the team that is going to beat the All Blacks, that is most capable. He clearly doesn't have trust or faith in the reserves and we're only going to find out about them when the front liners get injured. And I think that's wrong.

"You've brought players as part of the 40...Every player whose on that plane should be a viable option for the test series. If you lose and concede six tries, then surely there is scope to change the team."

Farrell is a continuity coach. He believes picking the same foundation over and over again will improve the performances as the team builds patterns and familiarity with each other. But there's a fine line between building continuity and complacency.

Right now the Irish starters are comfortable. Save for one or two players, they all know that they will start if they are healthy.

"At least send a message to your players that this is an unacceptable level. You're all great players, you will play for Ireland again if you prove yourselves. But you can't concede six tries in a test match and play the next week.

"This is not a team full of grand slam winners who've achieved a lot as a collective."

What's most concerning is that this damages both the short and long-term outlook for this Ireland team. But it's also a shared trait between Farrell and his predecessor Joe Schmidt. If Ireland can't adapt and improve, they will regress just in time for that familiar World Cup feeling.

South Africa to the Six Nations by 2025?

 

Team of Us. Everyone In.

Vodafone. The main sponsor of the Irish Rugby Team

Download the brand new OTB Sports App in the Play Store & App Store right now! We've got you covered!

Subscribe to OTB Sports's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


Read more about

Andy Farrell Ireland Rugby Joe Schmidt Keith Earls Mack Hansen New Zealand

Live: Title

Description

Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Next up in queue

Title
Description
Duration

There are currently no podcasts in the queue

Go to podcasts

On Air

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

05:00 AM-07:00 AM

Share

Up next

OTB's Crappy Quiz

OTB's Crappy Quiz

07:00 AM-07:30 AM

Share

LIVE: OTB AM

LIVE: OTB AM

07:30 AM-10:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

10:00 AM-12:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

12:00 PM-01:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

01:00 PM-02:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

02:00 PM-03:00 PM

Share

LIVE: Friday Night Racing

LIVE: Friday Night Racing

03:00 PM-04:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

04:00 PM-06:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

06:00 PM-07:00 PM

Share

LIVE: Off The Ball

LIVE: Off The Ball

07:00 PM-08:00 PM

Share

Repeat: Friday Night Racing

Repeat: Friday Night Racing

08:00 PM-09:00 PM

Share

Team 33

Team 33

09:00 PM-10:00 PM

Share

Repeat: Off The Ball

Repeat: Off The Ball

10:00 PM-12:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

12:00 AM-02:00 AM

Share

Repeat: Off The Ball

Repeat: Off The Ball

02:00 AM-05:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

05:00 AM-07:00 AM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on