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    While I share the frustration, Leinster have a very good very settled team. We still have some way to go even with the new recruits. Leinster with home advantage will be massive favourites.

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      Originally posted by reded View Post
      While I share the frustration, Leinster have a very good very settled team. We still have some way to go even with the new recruits. Leinster with home advantage will be massive favourites.
      We are going to be prioritising later games though so more likely to field a weaker team etc than Munster as Munster need to win this game

      Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk

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        Originally posted by reded View Post
        While I share the frustration, Leinster have a very good very settled team. We still have some way to go even with the new recruits. Leinster with home advantage will be massive favourites.
        This is basically like the first preseason friendly. I know it's actually a competitive match, but form from last season is out the window.

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          Originally posted by In Joe we trust View Post
          We are going to be prioritising later games though so more likely to field a weaker team etc than Munster as Munster need to win this game

          Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk
          Also a lot of rumours that Leinster have a few high profile injuries that may miss the Pro14 games and the Saracens QF.

          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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            Originally posted by Cowboy View Post
            26 years old and 125 caps doesn't seem hard done by to me?
            That's kind of the thing, though. He was good enough to be in that many matches by age 26, yet they sought to replace him. If he obviously wasn't up to it, they'd have sought someone else a while ago, yet DeAllende becomes available and Scannell is instantly the second choice 12. Pro sports is a hard business, I get it, I really do, but I just don't think Scannell was at the level where the need for an immediate replacement was glaringly obvious.

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              Rory Scannell is a fine player but that feint and step off the left foot is easily read by most defence analysts now and he's simply not big enough to break the tackles of the top tier defenders in the game. De Allende is here for two seasons so Rory will have a massive fight on his hands but I'd back him to reinvent his game in that time. This is going to be a really great side.
              Munster – Champions of Europe 2006, 2008, 2020.

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                Originally posted by Finnegan79 View Post

                That's kind of the thing, though. He was good enough to be in that many matches by age 26, yet they sought to replace him. If he obviously wasn't up to it, they'd have sought someone else a while ago, yet DeAllende becomes available and Scannell is instantly the second choice 12. Pro sports is a hard business, I get it, I really do, but I just don't think Scannell was at the level where the need for an immediate replacement was glaringly obvious.
                They didn't replace him because there wasn't anyone better available who we could afford before now. When someone of the standard of De Allende becomes available and is getable you snap him up straight away.

                And it's not like he's being thrown on the scrapheap either. He'll play plenty of times this season.

                Comment


                  Originally posted by Finnegan79 View Post

                  That's kind of the thing, though. He was good enough to be in that many matches by age 26, yet they sought to replace him. If he obviously wasn't up to it, they'd have sought someone else a while ago, yet DeAllende becomes available and Scannell is instantly the second choice 12. Pro sports is a hard business, I get it, I really do, but I just don't think Scannell was at the level where the need for an immediate replacement was glaringly obvious.
                  I dont share this sentiment. Hes behind Aki Henshaw Marshall and potentially Dan Goggin for Ireland alone. Hes a small peg in todays 12 hole.

                  As wallyman said, when the starter at 12 in the world cup winning team becomes available you get him signed immediately.

                  Spinning it the otherway, Scans could win another 125 caps for Munster and we win nothing, DeAllende might get 20 and we get a few titles. We are losing the key games because we've too many guys who are not used to the biggest days. DeAllende does not share that issue.
                  I am the million man.

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                    Originally posted by In Joe we trust View Post
                    We are going to be prioritising later games though so more likely to field a weaker team etc than Munster as Munster need to win this game

                    Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk
                    Get comfortable on that perch. 10 years of second fiddle can make a team extremely hungry.
                    I am the million man.

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                      Originally posted by Cowboy View Post

                      Get comfortable on that perch. 10 years of second fiddle can make a team extremely hungry.
                      Exactly, when you're in the middle of it, it seems like the good times will go on forever but when a team goes past it's sell-by date things go south very quickly and it can take a very long time to get back to the top. Same is true in all sports.
                      When things go wrong, blame McGahan

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                        Training pics from this week as they step up training on the pitch

                        https://www.munsterrugby.ie/gallery/...ek-6-30-07-20/

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                          Good article from the42.ie on Munster's emerging talent

                          Munster excited about the 'serious, serious young lads coming through'

                          Meanwhile, the ‘eye-opening’ Stephen Larkham is making a big impact on the squad.

                          10 hours ago 10,205 Views 4 Comments
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                          THE FOCUS IN recent weeks has understandably been on the big-name additions to Munster’s senior squad but Johann van Graan’s men are also very excited about the potential of the young players breaking into their set-up.

                          With prospects like scrum-half Craig Casey, second row Fineen Wycherley, back row Gavin Coombes, and wing Calvin Nash having already displayed their promise at senior level, Munster believe there is plenty more talent to come.

                          Tighthead prop Keynan Knox, back row Jack O’Sullivan, wing Liam Coombes, hooker Diarmuid Barron, and centre Alex McHenry have all graduated from the academy into the southern province’s senior squad this summer, while there are several other highly-rated talents hoping to make the same jump in the future.

                          21-year-old scrum-half Craig Casey is an exciting prospect for Munster.Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

                          Second row Thomas Ahern and out-half Jack Crowley were two of the latest to signal their potential with the Ireland U20s, impressing earlier this year as they followed in the footsteps of fellow academy players like Jonathan Wren, Sean French, Jake Flannery, Josh Wycherley, James French, Eoghan Clarke, and Jack Daly.

                          Dynamic back row John Hodnett and intelligent out-half Ben Healy have already made an impression for the senior team, while lock pair Paddy Kelly and Eoin O’Connor will be aiming to push on this season.

                          Add in Crowley’s fellow Year 1 recruits, hooker Scott Buckley and back row Alex Kendellen, and Munster have a crop of promising players they’re excited about.

                          Johann van Graan has been keen to integrate academy players into the senior set-up more often in recent seasons and has done so again this summer. Meanwhile, the players who have already moved onto senior contracts are standing out in training.

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                            and from the same article Andrew Conway's perspective

                            “There are some serious, serious young lads coming through Munster now,” explains experienced wing Andrew Conway.

                            “I know you guys are aware of it but even watching them in training, they seem ready already but they’re eager to learn and they have a great attitude, which is as important as the talent.

                            “You all know about Craig Casey but he’s just so impressive. He’s leading as a 21-year-old. He’s leading by his attitude and his competitiveness. He’s barking at people. Obviously, he’s young and he’ll make mistakes along the way but that’s the attitude that they all have in a certain way.

                            “They’re all built from a similar stock so it’s really exciting. As much as we will be taking them under our wing, we’ll be learning from them and hopefully, they’re kicking the door down trying to get spots in the team.”

                            Munster’s production line has been criticised at times in recent years but Conway is convinced the current crop of emerging players and academy hopefuls have what it takes.

                            Andrew Conway was speaking as Pinergy announced a re-brand.Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

                            The Ireland international feels the young talent will drive better performances from established players too.

                            “It pushes us obviously because there’s a few lads coming up behind us here who are looking good. It pushes the standard in training, it’s not where you’ve got a couple of young lads who are coming in and they’re fresh and they’re a bit rattled to be even in the session and just trying to get through it.

                            “These lads are coming in and pushing the standards and having a bit of craic, talking a bit of ****. It actually just creates a really enjoyable environment and a lot of them are just really good young lads. There’s no airs or graces about them. They want to work. They want to get into a Munster team. It’s brilliant I must say.”

                            Of course, Conway is excited about Munster’s new recruits from outside the province – RG Snyman, Damian de Allende, Matt Gallagher, and Roman Salanoa – although the staggered nature of returning to pre-season training in small groups at first means he has yet to get to know them all.

                            “I’ve seen very little of RG other than seeing him from a mile away and thinking, ‘I’ve never seen something so big.’ I haven’t seen much of Damian at all, he’s in a separate group to me.

                            “I’ve seen Matt Gallagher who was in my group for a couple of weeks. He’s a lovely fella, ambitious. Big fella, which I was surprised about, I think he’s in the high 90s kilos. He has a good left foot on him. Roman, again, is in a different group from me but I’ve seen a bit of him and he looks like a proper athlete.”

                            Conway is also enthusiastic about the impact Munster’s now-settled coaching staff are making, with senior coach Stephen Larkham’s input on attack now clearer than ever without the distraction of the World Cup that existed last summer, when 12 Munster players were away for the Australian’s first few months with the province.

                            “We came back from a tough World Cup and you’re just trying to fit straight back in and the lads were going really well,” says Conway. “And the international players probably didn’t do any favours for Munster last season if you look at the results.

                            “Obviously, we’re playing more so in the European Cup and potentially against tougher opposition at times but as a team, Munster were playing better more often than not with the lads who had been there from the start, if we’re being honest about it.

                            Senior coach Stephen Larkham has impressed Conway.Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

                            “That’s no ones fault necessarily because it was a tough – you had 12 of us coming back into a new system trying to fit straight back in. It wasn’t ideal, that’s no secret, that’s no news to anyone.

                            “But this year, we’ve had the break, we’ve had meetings over a period and I’ve been in Steve’s group the whole time, so five or six weeks back into it. It’s honestly eye-opening the stuff this fella knows and the way he thinks about the game and the way he thinks about the physical side of it, the skill level, the mental side of it, the mental application and how you marry them together.

                            “I know there’s always this chat at the start of a season, but I’ve never been this excited… I truly have never been this excited to play for Munster with the lads we have both in the management and the playing staff.

                            “And again I can say all this and the proof will be in the pudding but that’s how I feel.”



                            Munster’s first chance to show their excitement will be against Leinster at the Aviva Stadium on 22 August in the Pro14, the perfect fixture for the return of rugby.

                            Conway explains that Munster are taking a knock-out rugby mindset into that game and the one versus Connacht the following week before they hope to move onto a Pro14 semi-final and final.

                            “Inter-pro is always the easy ones to latch onto in the calendar but even more so now because they’re essentially knock-out rugby if you look at it from our point of view in terms of points accumulated and what we need,” says Conway.

                            “We need a win, ideally we get two wins obviously to guarantee a semi-final or home semi-final, whatever it might be. The way we’re looking at is that it’s knock-out rugby straight from the get-go, so that’s going to be the mindset we’re going into it with.

                            “To start off your season after however many months off with Leinster in the Aviva, it doesn’t get much tougher than that. It’s great and I think we’re in a relatively good place considering, things are coming together for us hopefully.”

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                              Originally posted by B.A. View Post

                              I may have mentioned it before but I cannot fuppin wait to see them tear the heads off some blue magoos.
                              Click image for larger version

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                              Haircut for silverware.
                              I am the million man.

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                                Murray Kinsella's take on Munster's depth chart on the42.ie

                                The Munster depth chart: Big-name signings and fascinating selection battles

                                Johann van Graan’s 43-man senior squad looks well set to push on this season.

                                1 hour ago 1,686 Views 9 Comments
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                                HAVING EXAMINED THE senior squads of the other three provinces in recent days, we turn finally towards Munster.

                                Depth will be vital for the campaign ahead, with the 2019/20 season set to be concluded before the 2020/21 campaign begins and with a busy international calendar to be considered too.

                                You can check out how the other provinces’ squads are shaping up here:

                                Connacht

                                Leinster

                                Ulster

                                Below, we take stock of how Johann van Graan’s 43-man Munster senior squad is looking ahead of a busy campaign.

                                Included in brackets after each player’s name is their age and number of Munster caps in the format [age, caps]. Players have been listed by number of caps.

                                Loosehead prop

                                Dave Kilcoyne [31, 182]
                                James Cronin [29, 124]
                                Jeremy Loughman [24, 38]
                                Liam O’Connor [25, 26]

                                James Cronin [centre] at Munster training today.Source: Munster Rugby/INPHO

                                Dave Kilcoyne is the first-choice in this position and some fans feel he should have had more minutes with Ireland in recent years too, with his ball-carrying power remaining an important weapon for Munster.

                                24-year-old Jeremy Loughman made a real breakthrough last season, earning the man-of-the-match award on his first Champions Cup start against the Ospreys and retaining the number one shirt for the clash with Racing the following week.

                                However, the experienced Ireland international James Cronin will be determined to move up the pecking order after his recent one-month anti-doping ban and with his injury issues behind him.

                                Liam O’Connor, who is well-regarded within the squad, will hope that his own knee injury nightmares are well in the past too.

                                Hooker

                                Niall Scannell [28, 103]
                                Rhys Marshall [27, 69]
                                Kevin O’Byrne [29, 67]
                                Diarmuid Barron [21, 7]

                                Niall Scannell has a point to prove in order to regain his place in the Ireland squad after being excluded from Andy Farrell’s Six Nations group and will hope to show more dynamism around the pitch.

                                Kiwi hooker Rhys Marshall, who is Irish-qualified, was severely hampered by calf injuries last season, playing just three times in the Pro14 in 2019/20. He will be keen to avoid any such similar setbacks.

                                29-year-old Kevin O’Byrne has quietly emerged as a strong player for Munster in recent seasons, marrying an aggressive streak with ever-improving handling skill. Finally, academy graduate Diarmuid Barron has already made seven senior appearances and brings a tough edge.

                                Tighthead prop



                                Stephen Archer [32, 208]
                                John Ryan [31, 156]
                                Keynan Knox [21, 8]
                                Roman Salanoa [22, 0]

                                Keynan Knox [centre] at Munster's session in UL.Source: Munster Rugby/INPHO

                                A fascinating position for Munster for the season ahead. The stalwart pair of John Ryan and Stephen Archer have been in a see-sawing battle for the starting tighthead role in recent years but now have to deal with two promising young guns aiming to take their places.

                                Ryan was part of Ireland’s World Cup squad last year but wasn’t included for the 2020 Six Nations, while Archer also has Ireland caps on his CV.

                                The dynamic, mobile upstarts are South Africa native Keynan Knox and Hawaii native Roman Salanoa, both of whom are set to qualify for Ireland under the residency rule this year.

                                115kg Knox has already made eight senior appearances for Munster, while 123kg Salanoa – a relative late starter in rugby – played for Leinster three times before his summer move to Limerick. Both youngsters are excellent athletes.

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