England vs France : England’s players have been urged to show no mercy to France at Twickenham and to reach an even higher level than they achieved in their opening Six Nations game in Ireland last Saturday. The head coach, Eddie Jones, and the captain, Owen Farrell, both sense there is further improvement to be made and believe complacency will not be an issue.
England vs France
Six Nations 2019
Location:Twickenham Stadium, London
Date:10 Feb 2019
England vs France Live Stream
Eddie Jones has made two changes to the England team to face France at Twickenham on Sunday. Courtney Lawes comes into the second row to replace the injured Maro Itoje while Chris Ashton will start on the wing in place of Jack Nowell.England have been installed as favourites to win the Six Nations title following their 32-20 win over reigning champions Ireland on the opening weekend.
The injury to Itoje will be cause for concern for Jones ahead of the French visit. The 24-year-old was an imposing figure in Dublin and is not expected to figure again for England until towards the end of this year’s championship but Lawes will add extra mobility and considerable experience to the England pack.
Jones is adamant his side, showing two starting changes, will be more of a handful than they proved in their 32-20 Dublin victory. “I’ve got no doubt we’ll be better this week,” said Jones, having promoted Chris Ashton and Courtney Lawes to his starting XV in place of Jack Nowell and the injured Maro Itoje respectively.
England vs France : 6 Nation 2019 Rugby
“France are a difficult team. If you look back at the Wales game, they gifted Wales 14 points. Take 14 points out of the Wales total and France are the clear winners. There’s no reason for us not to be extremely focused. We’re always fighting complacency. Sometimes the shadows get a bit bigger and sometimes they’re smaller but they’re always there.”
“The French are always an interesting side to play against,” said Jones when announcing his team. “They are full of talent, they have a lot of unpredictability so it’s hard to prepare tactically against them so we have had a real focus on ourselves.
England’s head coach is also banking on the recalled Ashton “to bring us something different we think is going to be valuable at the start of the game” in his first championship start since 2013, having appeared briefly from the bench last weekend.
Watching England is becoming a seat-of-the-pants exercise. Take your seat just a little late at Twickenham or in front of the TV on Sunday, and you risk missing a try. Never mind the scrum’s dark arts, Owen Farrell’s team are currently the masters of the fast start, as they get set for round two of the Six Nations, at home to France.