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    Originally posted by Oldschoolsocks View Post

    I wouldn’t necessarily agree, I think he’s often a passenger and that his best days are behind him - but sure here’s hoping that he can maintain his display from last weekend
    What did you think of POMs ball carrying vs Racing?
    \"Only Pienaar, Botha and Ferris would be in contention for a place on our first 15. That\'s a fact.\" - Tickettout\'s take on Ulster April 2011.

    Comment


      O'Mahoney is the closest thing we have on the pitch to Axel.

      Passenger! FFS.
      Munster – Champions of Europe 2006, 2008, 2020.

      Comment


        Originally posted by Talking Sense View Post

        What did you think of POMs ball carrying vs Racing?
        you can take the here’s hoping he can carry his form forward etc for this one. Well done Pete, prove me wrong!!!

        Only fools and drunks argue over everything. If you don’t have a hangover the next day you’re not the drunk...

        Comment


          https://www.the42.ie/david-nucifora-...18384-Dec2019/

          Schmidtball was, in facta, shytball


          They’re like a risk assessor, looking at strength and weaknesses of personnel and of opposition

          Should we have developed our game further? Potentially yes, but I say that with the benefit of hindsight

          Should we have armed our players with more tools? In hindsight, we should have but that’s easy for me to say that sitting here now

          Performance anxiety or stress, I do believe it was really relevant for us before and during the tournament
          I am the million man.

          Comment


            Originally posted by Cowboy View Post
            https://www.the42.ie/david-nucifora-...18384-Dec2019/

            Schmidtball was, in facta, shytball


            They’re like a risk assessor, looking at strength and weaknesses of personnel and of opposition

            Should we have developed our game further? Potentially yes, but I say that with the benefit of hindsight

            Should we have armed our players with more tools? In hindsight, we should have but that’s easy for me to say that sitting here now

            Performance anxiety or stress, I do believe it was really relevant for us before and during the tournament
            The report is interesting for what it left out nearly as much as what it put in imho.

            Nucifora cited 4 areas, all of which were Joe Schmidt's responsibility, which in fairness, he qualifies by saying this report is with hindsight. I wonder are they looking at the role of central contracting & selecting on form as contributory issues at all, as certainly Donnacha Ryan proved a massive loss overseas for this world cup, as perhaps others...

            I was as constructively critical of JS when he was coach as I felt was fair & warranted at the time, when he could actually influence the squad & team selection, preparation & tactics, and I did point all my misgivings pre world cup, but now tbh a report merely throwing him under a bus is about as useful going forward as saying Warren Gatland's 13 man lineout was a cop out in '99.

            The plain truth is most in Irish rugby are aware of the shortcomings of the previous coaching regime, it's actually the direction of rugby development, contracting and incentive/ rewards for performance that would probably be the more valuable issues to be addressed imho, as these are the prevailing framework going forward.

            P.s. for the record, I consider Joe Schmidt to have been a really excellent Irish coach, albeit who's last year in charge was a big let down, but a great Irish coach nonetheless, and his record backs that up.
            ____________________________________________
            Munster were great when they were Munster.

            alas they are just north munster now.......
            ____________________________________________

            Comment


              Originally posted by Daithi View Post

              The report is interesting for what it left out nearly as much as what it put in imho.

              Nucifora cited 4 areas, all of which were Joe Schmidt's responsibility, which in fairness, he qualifies by saying this report is with hindsight. I wonder are they looking at the role of central contracting & selecting on form as contributory issues at all, as certainly Donnacha Ryan proved a massive loss overseas for this world cup, as perhaps others...

              I was as constructively critical of JS when he was coach as I felt was fair & warranted at the time, when he could actually influence the squad & team selection, preparation & tactics, and I did point all my misgivings pre world cup, but now tbh a report merely throwing him under a bus is about as useful going forward as saying Warren Gatland's 13 man lineout was a cop out in '99.

              The plain truth is most in Irish rugby are aware of the shortcomings of the previous coaching regime, it's actually the direction of rugby development, contracting and incentive/ rewards for performance that would probably be the more valuable issues to be addressed imho, as these are the prevailing framework going forward.

              P.s. for the record, I consider Joe Schmidt to have been a really excellent Irish coach, albeit who's last year in charge was a big let down, but a great Irish coach nonetheless, and his record backs that up.
              It is useful for the new(ish) coaching team, and the players, to learn from Joe's mistakes. It may be a bit unseemly to chuck him under the bus like this but all the stuff coming out in this report, and Best's interview, confirms that a lot of the blame lies with his control freakery and conservatism. It's important that those lessons are learned. It's tough on him but he wanted full control and he got it, so the buck mostly stops with him.

              The questions around central contracts and selection are a bit difficult to answer without knowing who the main decision makers were. Joe is likely to have had a big say in who got one but I agree that Nucifora's role in that should also be looked at.

              Comment


                Rory Best threw his two pence in as well.

                Like a shart, the mess will become apparent to others sooner or later.
                I am the million man.

                Comment


                  yep, here it is..
                  Ireland’s World Cup: ‘Too much detail and too much tension’, says Best


                  Rory Best believes that Ireland’s World Cup meltdown in Japan was impacted by “too much detail” from the coaches creating “too much tension” in the camp leading up to games.

                  The retired captain also cites “complacency” when revealing a clearer picture of how the national team’s fortunes went so badly askew in 2019.

                  “I think we started to become - not dictated to - but we just let Joe do everything,” said Best, speaking at a Specsavers Audiologist event in Dublin yesterday. “The great thing about 2018 was we had our own voice and our own mind. There was that freedom at the end of the week to step into a space to lead. You can’t just turn up at the Aviva stadium at five o’clock ‘Right, it’s our turn to lead.’ You can get a bit lost.

                  “I think in 2019 that end of the week space started to be filled a bit much with coaches.”

                  After the disastrous 57-15 defeat to England at Twickenham in August, the Irish leadership group - which includes Best, Johnny Sexton and Peter O’Mahony - approached head coach Joe Schmidt seeking increased player control 24 hours out from games.

                  No more meetings, they requested, and stop the information overload when players are already struggling to cope.

                  “After that England defeat we sat down with Joe and said ‘Listen, we trust you implicitly. We know you will get the tactics right. But on the flip side you are going to have to trust us that from Captain’s Run onwards to let us build in our own way.’”

                  This player driven approach, initially accepted by Schmidt, was abandoned, to Best’s regret, between the Scotland and Japan games at the World Cup, and there followed over complicated preparations before the 46-14 quarter-final defeat to New Zealand in Tokyo.

                  Best also feels the team could have been freshened up, with in-form players like Dave Kilcoyne, before the historic loss to the hosts in Shizuoka.

                  “Looking back, I do think a very, very small level of complacency has to have kicked in,” Best admitted. “You don’t go from 2018 (Six Nations champions, series win in Australia, unbeaten in November) to 2019 (five defeats) without that happening. It might only be one per cent from each player but add all that up over 30 odd players at that level can make a big difference.

                  “I think that we believed what everyone was saying. You are very quick to say ‘don’t believe what they are saying’ when it is negative but you are not as quick to say that when it is positive.

                  “We should have been more streetwise. Grand Slam, autumn (beating the All Blacks), swept the World Rugby awards and I think when we went to Portugal we slipped back to where we had been nearly even pre-Joe.

                  “We (the players) talk about how we nearly wasted those (summer) training camps before that week. It was seen as get the feet up to recover.

                  “I don’t think we slipped that far back but as a player group I don’t think we did the work that we maybe had done in the 24 months previous to that. Whenever you start to leave little bits undone they will always come back to bite you when you least want them to.

                  “There has to be a level of complacency.”

                  Best also revealed the players “were on edge, on edge, on edge” until victory in the opening Pool A match only to feel jaded come the Japan game six days later.

                  “When we had that Scotland performance we thought ‘We are back to where we were in 2018 and it will just roll on from here.’

                  “As a player group we needed to be stronger in that space.”

                  Did it become a suffocating environment?

                  “I just think (Schmidt) and the other coaches, if the players don’t fill the space, they are going to fill it,” Best replied. “It must be the hardest thing in the world to be a coach because you don’t control what happens (in a game). You can control everything up to that.

                  “Japan, because of the short turnaround, the Captain’s Run had to become more of a training session because we had things we needed to do in it.”

                  To clarify, does Best feel that the leaders should have seized control, by relaxing the flow of information, the day before matches?

                  “Ultimately, me as captain, needs to take a fair bit of that responsibility; were we just happy to go ‘we know how good Joe is and he says it is right, it is right’? Rather than going ‘You know what . . .’ We did challenge him a bit but we should have stepped up more during the Six Nations when it was going wrong and tried to lead a bit more.”

                  A specific example was the temporary change of coach-led meetings to Thursday evening.

                  “So from Friday morning there are no meetings. Because everyone is so uptight you can create a bit of craic, play a bit of touch, something just to ease the tension. If you have a meeting on Friday morning it starts to build the tension. All you are doing is starting here and it is only going one way. And then it crashes.”

                  Spectacularly, as it turned out.

                  “Too much detail and too much tension too early,” said Best. “If I’d known it was happening, I’d have stood up and said, ‘Look, I don’t think we need this.’ Joe just needed to trust . . . he’s the best coach I’ve ever worked with bar nobody, but just trust that it’s there.

                  “It (the quarter-final) was such a big game for him, such a big game for me. We both knew that lose and we're out, we're done, our careers over. Well, he might come back in now but certainly our Irish careers' were over. That creates tension in itself. You want to make sure no stone is left unturned, and sometimes by doing that you end up spoon feeding the players and they almost go 'Right, that's been said so I don’t need to mentally prepare for it.'

                  So, it seems, the devil was in the amount of detail.

                  The flood of pre-match detail from Irish coaches also happened before the quarter-final, as Best explains: “The All Blacks was a really funny one because that was probably the best we’d trained in, I can’t remember how long . . . Again, you can’t start your match build up on the morning of the game. It’s got to be more about letting the boys breathe and have a little fun.

                  “If you ease it off people will build in their own way over the 24 hours. After the England game we said we would do that and then we took our foot off the gas and allowed it to be ‘Aw look, we won’t do the meeting Thursday, we’ll do it Friday’ and I probably just went ‘Yeah, I trust you.’


                  “It’s all about easing and breaking the tension a little bit.

                  “Then once we have the team meeting you get on the bus to the game and it’s the first time you’ve heard Joe speak in 24 hours and it’s really empowering and gets you ready to go. Whatever happened, the morning of the New Zealand game, the coaches wanted a huddle and to talk through some plays. I think there was a little worry that we hadn’t emphasised something enough.”

                  Schmidt has not mentioned this issue on his recent widespread media book tour.

                  “We had one (meeting) before that England game where we talked about the threat of Ben Youngs, and all that happened was we talked about the threat and we all got so hyped up and then Ben made I don’t know how many line breaks just by scooting,” Best continued. “Exactly what we talked about.

                  “I felt that probably happened the morning of the New Zealand game. It took three or four people to drop passes before there was a big ripple of laughter.”

                  Schmidt’s book did reveal that Best considered retirement in the wake of public outcry to the Ireland captain attending the Belfast rape trial of former Ulster teammates Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding - both men were subsequently found not guilty - the week of the opening Six Nations game against France in 2018.

                  “You consider (retirement) because you want to do what’s best for the team. And at that stage there was a lot going on. I sort of felt the best thing for the team and for me was to retire. Ultimately, that’s what it was all based on, what was best for the team.

                  “And when he (Schmidt) said ‘No, we need you in Paris’ I didn’t give it a second thought because that was the reassurance you need to go ‘Right, this is the best thing for the squad.’ That is what ultimately drives you forward because you like to think you are an unselfish player and when you are that you would sacrifice anything for Ireland to succeed.”




                  He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

                  Comment


                    .... continued...

                    Best is currently working on his own autobiography with the journalist Gavin Mairs. It’s not being published until March 2020 simply because they could not find the time to properly complete it for the Christmas market.

                    “When you’re 37, you don’t want to give anyone any excuse: ‘Oh, he’s 37 and he’s writing a book, is that why he’s not playing well, he’s old, is his priority playing for Ireland or making money?’ I didn’t want any of that, I wanted to focus on what was going to be my last tournament, my last representation of Ireland.”

                    He was unaware that Schmidt was working on the underwhelming ‘Ordinary Joe’ memoir throughout the failed Japan campaign.

                    “The logic of what we did at the time felt right: let’s just go really heavy at the first two games and then we can take two weeks into the next game, make a lot of changes and it is only now you look back and you see the real attrition in that first game (Scotland), the six day turnaround, with the move, the heat and everything.

                    “There is always in a team a few people who are really close (to selection), really nip and tuck, and someone might be a better player but someone is coming behind them who is on fire, and is playing above what they can do. You wonder whether a couple of those changes could have happened but, again, you are dealing in hindsight.

                    “I think as a player you trust the coach and that’s what we do. I think now we look and think could we have freshened the front five in some shape or form?

                    “If you inject Dave Kilcoyne to start that game, that burst of energy, someone coming in with the carrot of ‘you might be a starter for us - you are playing in the big game’ and the ripple effect that creates.

                    “For me personally it was tough. It’s a difficult one, at 37, playing 80 minutes to six days later turning around and playing again but then if you do not play your captain what does that say? If you don’t pick your strongest team what are you saying? I think we looked like a group of players who needed an injection of energy from somewhere and we just didn’t quite get it.”
                    He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by Munsterboy View Post

                      It is useful for the new(ish) coaching team, and the players, to learn from Joe's mistakes. It may be a bit unseemly to chuck him under the bus like this but all the stuff coming out in this report, and Best's interview, confirms that a lot of the blame lies with his control freakery and conservatism. It's important that those lessons are learned. It's tough on him but he wanted full control and he got it, so the buck mostly stops with him.

                      The questions around central contracts and selection are a bit difficult to answer without knowing who the main decision makers were. Joe is likely to have had a big say in who got one but I agree that Nucifora's role in that should also be looked at.
                      That is the elephant in the room; why did Nucifora and the IRFU hand out central deals to guys well into their 30s ? Why were some players undroppable despite poor form ? Did the fact that they were on those deals entitle them to selection despite being out of form ? Any report not dealing with those aspects of Joe Schmidt's tenure isn't worth the paper it is printed on. Maybe those questions are answered in the non public version, idk.

                      One has to wonder how much 2018 sort of papered over the cracks visible in the 2016 and 2017 6N where they finished 3rd in 2016 and were awarded 2nd in 2017 due to points differential over France and Scotland.

                      Comment


                        Some things go under a bus, other things go under a carpet.
                        These things take time
                        Gwan Joe!!

                        Comment


                          Poor old Joe. During his tenure as Ireland coach he was the darling of the IRFU, the media, the fans and most of the players. Now everyone's queuing up to kick him in the ballocks. To be fair, his shortcomings, lack of flexibility and play-by-numbers approach, were pointed out on these boards by astute rugby observers some time ago. The writing was on the wall but not all could see it (though now they can in hindsight.)
                          Erse end of nowhere

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by Finnegan79 View Post

                            That is the elephant in the room; why did Nucifora and the IRFU hand out central deals to guys well into their 30s ? Why were some players undroppable despite poor form ? Did the fact that they were on those deals entitle them to selection despite being out of form ? Any report not dealing with those aspects of Joe Schmidt's tenure isn't worth the paper it is printed on. Maybe those questions are answered in the non public version, idk.

                            One has to wonder how much 2018 sort of papered over the cracks visible in the 2016 and 2017 6N where they finished 3rd in 2016 and were awarded 2nd in 2017 due to points differential over France and Scotland.
                            One over 30 who didn’t get a contract was Donnacha Ryan, as D’Arcy said this week that was one that got away
                            Nulla semper amicus, servivit mihi, in iniuriam mihi neminem quem non persolvi

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by Sulla View Post

                              One over 30 who didn’t get a contract was Donnacha Ryan, as D’Arcy said this week that was one that got away
                              And D'Arcy blames Munster!!
                              Munster – Champions of Europe 2006, 2008, 2020.

                              Comment


                                All a bit embarrassing and unseemly, I think.

                                Avoiding the selection fiasco, allowing Joe to bring injured players on tour, understimating the opposition, not seeing what was obvious during the warm up games.

                                And as for Rory Best's comments!!!!

                                At least Andy Farrell knows he won't be getting Nucifora to watch out for him and that he'll be copping the blame after future poor performances.

                                Did anyone explain why Sexton was chosen as captain over POM?
                                "Fineen Wycherley was everywhere. When I watched this video back late on Saturday night I half expected to look up from my laptop to find him in my kitchen ' TRK Nov 3rd 2019 following Cardiff v Munster

                                Comment

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