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    Originally posted by Waterfordlad View Post

    I agree with most of that but it was Farrell who dropped Scannell not Schmidt
    I know, but that was based on a few things, namely, Scannell not getting a proper look the past few seasons and the hype around Kelleher, which is deserved.

    Scannell has 20 caps since 2017, 11 of which came against tier 2 nations or Italy. Some of those only came b/c Best was injured or out with an illness. That's a bit ridiculous when the two guys ahead of him were in their 30s, one of whom was close to retiring. Schmidt used him pretty much only when he was forced to or didn't see the opposition as being particularly threatening. Even against the Wallabies, he had Scannell start over Cronin only b/c his opinion of Cronin was so bad but he couldn't totally drop him but would start almost anyone over him. It was the same with Healy / Kilcoyne, the "impact sub" myth. Of course Farrell was going to dump Scannell; Joe clearly had little use for him, and Farrell was in that room, so it isn't any shock, just like it was no real shock that Cooney didn't start against Scotland to kick off the 6N.

    Comment


      Scannell was good in 2018 but went backwards with injury after that so too Marshall so if they can stay fit and get a run of games I would hope they can get back to where they were. In fairness Kevin O Byrne has excelled when given his chance and has caught up with them.I think hooker is an area of strength for us.

      Comment


        Scannell was an outstanding u-20s player and showed some very promising moments in his early professional career. But he's never kicked on fully, and in all honesty looks underpowered at Heineken Cup (never mind international) level.

        Comment


          Originally posted by POPEYE View Post
          Scannell was good in 2018 but went backwards with injury after that so too Marshall so if they can stay fit and get a run of games I would hope they can get back to where they were. In fairness Kevin O Byrne has excelled when given his chance and has caught up with them.I think hooker is an area of strength for us.
          I’d rather have one genuinely international standard hooker than 4 who look like they are top half of the Pro14 level on form


          Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
          \"In a world gone mad, only a lunatic is truly insane\"

          Comment


            Originally posted by Colliniho View Post

            I’d rather have one genuinely international standard hooker than 4 who look like they are top half of the Pro14 level on form


            Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
            I think Scannell was up to International standard at one stage but went backwards.Maybe getting dropped from Irish squad will be the kick in the arse that will drive him on.Marshall and O Byrne are also in my opinion higher than top pro 14 level but need to prove it next year .But you’re right we need at least one of them to step up to get back in Irish squad or else the knock on effects also are that all three will be vying for game time during international window which will be difficult and one of them would lose out .It will also hinder Diarmuid Barrons development but I am optimistic that won’t happen.

            Comment


              Originally posted by POPEYE View Post

              I think Scannell was up to International standard at one stage but went backwards.Maybe getting dropped from Irish squad will be the kick in the arse that will drive him on.Marshall and O Byrne are also in my opinion higher than top pro 14 level but need to prove it next year .But you’re right we need at least one of them to step up to get back in Irish squad or else the knock on effects also are that all three will be vying for game time during international window which will be difficult and one of them would lose out .It will also hinder Diarmuid Barrons development but I am optimistic that won’t happen.
              I think hooker and tighthead are our 2 biggest weak spots on paper.
              We have buckets of cover (4 players for each position with one more each in the final year of the academy) but we don’t have anybody where I think “on his day I’d put him in against anyone in Europe”.
              We have lots of players operating around the same level, and it’s below where we need them to be.
              I have huge hopes for Keynan Knox, but I don’t see anyone at hooker with the same potential


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              \"In a world gone mad, only a lunatic is truly insane\"

              Comment


                Originally posted by Colliniho View Post

                I think hooker and tighthead are our 2 biggest weak spots on paper.
                We have buckets of cover (4 players for each position with one more each in the final year of the academy) but we don’t have anybody where I think “on his day I’d put him in against anyone in Europe”.
                We have lots of players operating around the same level, and it’s below where we need them to be.
                I have huge hopes for Keynan Knox, but I don’t see anyone at hooker with the same potential


                Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


                I think the "against anyone in Europe" thing is an interesting one. Obviously the game changes, but in 2006 we went out in the final with a back line of Halstead, Kelly, Dowling, Horgan, Payne. Manning and Henderson on the bench.

                Admittedly our pack was, in hindsight, ****ing ridiculous.


                Again, 2 years later, we had brought in Howlett but still went out with Tipoki and Mafi, Dowling and Hurley.

                The Leinster team that won in 2009 had genuine quality right across the back line, but also had Chris Whitaker, Leo Cullen, Stan Wright, Shane Jennings.

                Looking at the last three years, Sarries won in 2017 with Chris Wyles, Brad Barritt, Marcelo Bosch, Alex Goode.

                Last year an arguably more talented set of Leinster players ran out of steam against Sarries and didn't have the bench depth.



                So the heave we need, imo, isn't enormous. We don't need world beaters right across the park. We need our key units (Front Row, Back Row, Half Backs, Midfield) to be able to get parity, but when you look at some of the guys who've won European medals over the last 10 years, the reality is that good enough is very often good enough.



                I agree with you about players that need to kick on, but I think there are worse tight heads than Ryan with a HEC medal. And worse hookers than Scannell.

                There is a level below Test rugby where very, very good rugby players win things in Europe without ever wracking up tens of caps.

                Surely we can get four or five lads through the curve to that level?
                "We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven into an age of unreason if we dig deep into our history and remember we are not descended from fearful men" Edward R Murrow

                "Little by little, we have been brought into the present condition in which we are able neither to tolerate the evils from which we suffer, nor the remedies we need to cure them." - Livy


                "I think that progress has been made by two flames that have always been burning in the human heart. The flame of anger against injustice and the flame of hope that you can build a better world" - Tony Benn

                Comment


                  Originally posted by Balla Boy View Post



                  I think the "against anyone in Europe" thing is an interesting one. Obviously the game changes, but in 2006 we went out in the final with a back line of Halstead, Kelly, Dowling, Horgan, Payne. Manning and Henderson on the bench.

                  Admittedly our pack was, in hindsight, ****ing ridiculous.


                  Again, 2 years later, we had brought in Howlett but still went out with Tipoki and Mafi, Dowling and Hurley.

                  The Leinster team that won in 2009 had genuine quality right across the back line, but also had Chris Whitaker, Leo Cullen, Stan Wright, Shane Jennings.

                  Looking at the last three years, Sarries won in 2017 with Chris Wyles, Brad Barritt, Marcelo Bosch, Alex Goode.

                  Last year an arguably more talented set of Leinster players ran out of steam against Sarries and didn't have the bench depth.



                  So the heave we need, imo, isn't enormous. We don't need world beaters right across the park. We need our key units (Front Row, Back Row, Half Backs, Midfield) to be able to get parity, but when you look at some of the guys who've won European medals over the last 10 years, the reality is that good enough is very often good enough.



                  I agree with you about players that need to kick on, but I think there are worse tight heads than Ryan with a HEC medal. And worse hookers than Scannell.

                  There is a level below Test rugby where very, very good rugby players win things in Europe without ever wracking up tens of caps.

                  Surely we can get four or five lads through the curve to that level?
                  Something I wrote a while ago on what I think we need to get back to the top level

                  https://amp.irishexaminer.com/breaki....co/9u5svfHrKi

                  Sent from my Redmi Note 9S using Tapatalk

                  \"God gave me the talent but the forwards gave me the ball\" - Jannie De Beer

                  \"I hesitate to use words like spiritual or religious, but to see what rugby means to Munster people is very moving\" Shaun Payne

                  I look back on 2008 at the Millennium Stadium as the highlight of my career because, although being capped by New Zealand and playing for the All Blacks was fantastic, this was special. - Doug Howlett

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by overthehillprop View Post
                    Something I wrote a while ago on what I think we need to get back to the top level

                    https://amp.irishexaminer.com/breaki....co/9u5svfHrKi

                    Sent from my Redmi Note 9S using Tapatalk


                    It's a very good breakdown.


                    The only thing I'd add is based on what I think is the oddest anomaly I see in HEC winning sides. Or maybe the opposite of an anomaly, whatever that is.

                    Teams win it with all sorts of configurations of Test players and solid top club players, scattered pretty much anywhere on the pitch.


                    But:

                    Farrell
                    Sexton
                    Farrell
                    Farrell
                    Giteau
                    Wilkinson
                    Wilkinson
                    Sexton
                    Sexton
                    Skrela
                    Sexton
                    O'Gara
                    King
                    O'Gara
                    Michalak


                    In the last 15 years of HEC champions that's only really King and arguably Skrela who aren't bone fide test superstars at 10.



                    We need the 8 internationals and can mix and match where most of them sit, but it seems non negotiable that one of our fly halves has to be an absolute, no questions asked Test quality player.


                    I know it seems like stating the obvious, but I've not really seen any other position where the calibre of cup winners is so consistently stellar.






                    "We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven into an age of unreason if we dig deep into our history and remember we are not descended from fearful men" Edward R Murrow

                    "Little by little, we have been brought into the present condition in which we are able neither to tolerate the evils from which we suffer, nor the remedies we need to cure them." - Livy


                    "I think that progress has been made by two flames that have always been burning in the human heart. The flame of anger against injustice and the flame of hope that you can build a better world" - Tony Benn

                    Comment




                      BTW - that's allowing for the fact that when Sexton won his first HEC he was, at the time, arguably the least accomplished fly half ever to raise it.
                      "We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven into an age of unreason if we dig deep into our history and remember we are not descended from fearful men" Edward R Murrow

                      "Little by little, we have been brought into the present condition in which we are able neither to tolerate the evils from which we suffer, nor the remedies we need to cure them." - Livy


                      "I think that progress has been made by two flames that have always been burning in the human heart. The flame of anger against injustice and the flame of hope that you can build a better world" - Tony Benn

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by overthehillprop View Post
                        Something I wrote a while ago on what I think we need to get back to the top level

                        https://amp.irishexaminer.com/breaki....co/9u5svfHrKi

                        Sent from my Redmi Note 9S using Tapatalk
                        Loved reading that at the time. Fair play, great article.

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by Balla Boy View Post



                          It's a very good breakdown.


                          The only thing I'd add is based on what I think is the oddest anomaly I see in HEC winning sides. Or maybe the opposite of an anomaly, whatever that is.

                          Teams win it with all sorts of configurations of Test players and solid top club players, scattered pretty much anywhere on the pitch.


                          But:

                          Farrell
                          Sexton
                          Farrell
                          Farrell
                          Giteau
                          Wilkinson
                          Wilkinson
                          Sexton
                          Sexton
                          Skrela
                          Sexton
                          O'Gara
                          King
                          O'Gara
                          Michalak


                          In the last 15 years of HEC champions that's only really King and arguably Skrela who aren't bone fide test superstars at 10.



                          We need the 8 internationals and can mix and match where most of them sit, but it seems non negotiable that one of our fly halves has to be an absolute, no questions asked Test quality player.


                          I know it seems like stating the obvious, but I've not really seen any other position where the calibre of cup winners is so consistently stellar.





                          That's a really great point about the out half. I hadn't really gone into position specifics around the internationals but it does make sense that you have your top class players in key decision making positions and especially at half back. Murray led the way and was our primary controller for a long while and while we haven't had a first choice international 10 since before ROG retired we are really reliant on Joey to stay injury free and establish himself in green.

                          Sent from my Redmi Note 9S using Tapatalk

                          \"God gave me the talent but the forwards gave me the ball\" - Jannie De Beer

                          \"I hesitate to use words like spiritual or religious, but to see what rugby means to Munster people is very moving\" Shaun Payne

                          I look back on 2008 at the Millennium Stadium as the highlight of my career because, although being capped by New Zealand and playing for the All Blacks was fantastic, this was special. - Doug Howlett

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by neliog93 View Post
                            Scannell was an outstanding u-20s player and showed some very promising moments in his early professional career. But he's never kicked on fully, and in all honesty looks underpowered at Heineken Cup (never mind international) level.

                            The only time I thought Scannell looked underpowered in the collisions was against Saracens in the Heniken cup semi-final. In that match Stander and Kilcoyne also looked underpowered, though, so I think that was more to do with how Munster’s attack was structured. If you are outnumbered 3-to-1 in the tackle situation, I don’t think it matters how good you are at ball-carrying, you will lose the vast majority of collisions you enter. Saracens also made Ryan and Healy look underpowered in last year’s Champions cup final by effectively over-crowding the collision.





                            Comment


                              There have been a number of really articulate posts/articles by BB and OTHP and I don’t disagree that there is a certain amount of quality players required, just not sure that international starter is a good barometer, given the amount of variables that go into making a guy an international starter. For example, I think that the current version of John Ryan would have been a nailed-on starter for Ireland 6 years ago, when Ireland were crying out for a reliable scrum. Mike Ross was one of Leinster’s Ireland starters, but wouldn’t have been at the same level as most of the top European tightheads. In that same Irish team, Jared Payne was a solid defensive 13, but there’s an argument to be made that Chris Farrell could have been a starter ahead of him. Currently, Kilcoyne would be an international starter for 4 ( Wales, Scotland, Italy, France) of the six nations countries, in my opinion.

                              I think we could be guilty of confusing cause vs correlation when it comes to estimating a number of international starters required to win the champions cup. In 2018, Racing lost the champions cup final by 3 points to Leinster and arguably deserved to win. Their team featured 5 regular International starters at the time (Teddy Thomas, Virimi Vakatawa, Henry Chavancy, Wenceslas Lauret and Leone Nakarawa) and quite a few average players:

                              15. Louis Dupichot
                              14. Teddy Thomas
                              13. Virimi Vakatawa
                              12. Henry Chavancy
                              11. Marc Andreu
                              10. Pat Lambie
                              9. Teddy Iribaren
                              1. Eddy Ben Arous
                              2. Camille Chat
                              3. Cedate Gomes Sa
                              4. Donnacha Ryan
                              5. Leone Nakarawa
                              6. Wenceslas Lauret
                              7. Bernard Le Roux
                              8. Yannick Nyanga (captain)

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by Mumhain View Post
                                There have been a number of really articulate posts/articles by BB and OTHP and I don’t disagree that there is a certain amount of quality players required, just not sure that international starter is a good barometer, given the amount of variables that go into making a guy an international starter. For example, I think that the current version of John Ryan would have been a nailed-on starter for Ireland 6 years ago, when Ireland were crying out for a reliable scrum. Mike Ross was one of Leinster’s Ireland starters, but wouldn’t have been at the same level as most of the top European tightheads. In that same Irish team, Jared Payne was a solid defensive 13, but there’s an argument to be made that Chris Farrell could have been a starter ahead of him. Currently, Kilcoyne would be an international starter for 4 ( Wales, Scotland, Italy, France) of the six nations countries, in my opinion.

                                I think we could be guilty of confusing cause vs correlation when it comes to estimating a number of international starters required to win the champions cup. In 2018, Racing lost the champions cup final by 3 points to Leinster and arguably deserved to win. Their team featured 5 regular International starters at the time (Teddy Thomas, Virimi Vakatawa, Henry Chavancy, Wenceslas Lauret and Leone Nakarawa) and quite a few average players:

                                15. Louis Dupichot
                                14. Teddy Thomas
                                13. Virimi Vakatawa
                                12. Henry Chavancy
                                11. Marc Andreu
                                10. Pat Lambie
                                9. Teddy Iribaren
                                1. Eddy Ben Arous
                                2. Camille Chat
                                3. Cedate Gomes Sa
                                4. Donnacha Ryan
                                5. Leone Nakarawa
                                6. Wenceslas Lauret
                                7. Bernard Le Roux
                                8. Yannick Nyanga (captain)
                                For me Munster have two major player developments to make to meet the general metrics of teams that have won the HEC. They need to increase the number of internationals but also the downstream impact of that happening is that some/most of the players who do make that step up are likely to be in the "really good non international" category and we will have to back fill those spots. I think we have the players in the squad but one of the significant problems we face is that with so few internationals away and needing to be rested we aren't forced to spread gametime more towards alternatives.

                                Sent from my Redmi Note 9S using Tapatalk

                                \"God gave me the talent but the forwards gave me the ball\" - Jannie De Beer

                                \"I hesitate to use words like spiritual or religious, but to see what rugby means to Munster people is very moving\" Shaun Payne

                                I look back on 2008 at the Millennium Stadium as the highlight of my career because, although being capped by New Zealand and playing for the All Blacks was fantastic, this was special. - Doug Howlett

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