In the build-up to the 2020 Six Nations championship, many pundits tipped England to win a Grand Slam, but the resurgent French ensured that wouldn’t happen.
Keith Wood, however, told Off The Ball's Wednesday Night Rugby he was happy England lost after the comments Eddie Jone made prior to the match.
“I loved it because it was a joy to watch,” Wood said. “And it was a joy on many levels because there’s no harm in England losing after the bullshitty comments of Eddie Jones.
“I always think things like that are a factor because they’re a factor for the opposition who stick it up on the wall. People say that they don’t need to, well don’t say it so because you have it.”
Before the game, Jones proclaimed that “the game is violent isn't it? You make a choice to play the game. It's a brutal, physically aggressive game. We saw in the World Cup final how important aggression is. It's going to be the same on Sunday.”
Wood took exception to Jones’ comments because of how the French physically dominated the game.
“It’s also the level of brutality that he was talking about, like what sort of pressure is that on his players? He wants to have great players and he started talking about it when the player that he relies upon - Billy Vunipola - wasn’t playing,” Wood said.
“England are a very different team when Vunipola isn’t in the side. I thought his selection was poor picking Currie at 8 and I thought he got schooled in the match.”
For France’s part in the spectacle, Keith Wood was effusive in his praise of a France side that is resurgent under the stewardship of Shaun Edwards.
“I just thought the level of athleticism from the French was phenomenal and I think Dupont is a pleasure to watch and he’s able to orchestrate whatever it is he wants to do.
“I thought it brought back a level of small rugby players and I thought that was fantastic.