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So Ireland suffered a devastating loss to old foes England on Sunday at Twickenham. England winning 24-12 in the end. Let’s take a look at the top 5 changes that need to happen ahead of Italy coming to the Aviva. However, the game may come under threat due to the coronavirus.
In truth it was a dreadful first half for Andy Farrell’s men. They conceded two poor tries albeit from two very bad mistakes from Johnny Sexton and Jacob Stockdale. If you take them to mistakes out of it Ireland weren’t far behind England in terms of the scoreboard. However, England outmuscled an overpowered Ireland for much of the game.
- Cooney to replace Murray – For me John Cooney simply has to be given a chance against Italy. Ireland will beat Italy that is a given but we are looking for a big performance here and of course a bonus point. Murray opted to box kick a lot in the loss to England. Whether that was a tactic or not I am not so sure. Cooney has to be given a chance from the start here.
2. Caelan Dorris to replace Van Der Flier – Van Der Flier had a poor enough game against England like many of the forwards so Dorris simply has to come in. He made a couple of good carriers when introduced off the bench against England.
3. Ronan Kelleher to replace Rob Herring – Kelleher should certainly start against the Italians. He has strong ball carrying abilities and of course has an impressive try scoring record with Leinster. Has to be given a chance from the start.
4. Chris Farrell to replace Bundee Aki – Farrell has yet to be given any game time. However, he has been in the squad. We all know what he is capable of. A strong runner with the ball and should be given a chance.
5 Keith Earls to replace Jacob Stockdale – Stockdale has been out of form in my opinion, Earls has been out injured but could force his way back into the side. He should also be given a chance against Italy.