France are up and running in this year’s Six Nations after a comprehensive win over Italy tonight in Marseille. Les Bleus lost two tight encounters to Ireland and Scotland, but they finally got a win on the board against the tournament’s basement boys. Jacques Brunel’s side seem to have improved, and ought not to be written off when England come to Paris in two weeks’ time.
However, this is the third consecutive game in which Conor O’Shea’s outfit were truly bettered. They now hold a points differential of -85, without even registering a losing bonus point. While the Irish head coach may have been pleased with some aspects of their play, the stats don’t make for pretty reading.
They prevented France from gaining a winning bonus point, but it was a landmark defeat for the Azzurri, as it is the first time that a country has lost 15 consecutive games in the Six Nations. Their last win came in 2015 against Scotland.
Italy now head into a two-week break before they travel to Cardiff, before finishing their campaign at home to Scotland.
O’Shea will be looking for his side to improve dramatically if they are to prevent calls amongst fans to give the likes of Georgia a chance at promotion into the tournament.