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Andy Farrell criticises Ireland’s lack of conviction

Andy Farrell has made no excuses for his side’s underwhelming performance after a 23 – 10 win over Georgia at the Aviva Stadium.

Ireland played well enough in the first half, scoring two tries in the opening 40 minutes and had one try ruled out due to a forward pass and other two deemed to be held up over the line.

The second half was a different story however, with Ireland only managing to put three points past the Georgians as they were repelled in attack time and time again.

The Ireland head coach was disappointed in his team’s attitude in the second 40, questioning their convictions in attack.

“Not good enough, not good enough. Certainly in that second 40, it wasn’t the standard we expect of ourselves.

“Especially playing at home after a first 40 that I thought was decent enough at times, still obviously things to fix at half-time but two tries [that were disallowed], one from a forward pass and I don’t know the rules any more regarding that.

“We come out in the second half and I just thought we didn’t have any courage of our own conviction.

“Georgia thoroughly deserved the right to slow our game down by being total menaces at the breakdown and fair play to them for that but that’s not good enough from us,” Farrell commented.

Missed opportunities

Ireland looked uninventive in attack, choosing to take the Georgian defence head on instead of passing the ball out for large swathes of the second half.

Farrell believes the unwillingness to try something different was as a result of a lack of “courage” rather than opportunities not presenting themselves.

“If you haven’t the courage of your own convictions then your follow through with whatever it may be.

“If you are trying to get the ball to the wide channels, let’s do it properly. Let’s make sure that there’s proper intent in our play to get it there.

“There certainly was opportunities for us to get into space out wide and we just tucked and turned ourselves back inside on a number of occasions and got turned over at the breakdown. They hunted us hard at the breakdown.

“Then on the other side of that, when we punched onto a ball, we punched onto a ball a couple of times towards the end of the game, really hard and tough.

“Then our breakdown work was able to follow but sometimes I didn’t think we had conviction with our carry as well and they were able to swallow our ball up,” Farrell said.

Ireland take on Scotland next Saturday in the final round of the Autumn Nations Cup. While the Scots haven’t looked particularly impressive, they had a chance to rest this weekend and will be hoping to take advantage of Irish fatigue after a 6-day turnaround.

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