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Owen Farrell v George Ford: What If England Had To Choose Between The Two Fly-Halves?

BAGSHOT, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 25: Owen Farrell (L) looks on with team mate George Ford during the England training session held at Pennyhill Park on November 25, 2014 in Bagshot, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

England under Eddie Jones have so far tended to operate with George Ford at fly-half, and Owen Farrell moved to inside-centre. But is this a stop-gap measure or a long-term solution to England’s vexing and seemingly perennial midfield problem?

Although it is very plausible that these two close friends, who had great success in junior rugby playing alongside each other, will continue to be midfield partners for England, what happens if the Red Rose produce a world-class No. 12 in the next decade? It’s been over ten years since England had one, so they are due…

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 18: Owen Farrell of England celebrates with George Ford after scoring the winning try as Israel Folau of the Wallabies looks on during the International Test match between the Australian Wallabies and England at AAMI Park on June 18, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

With that in mind, here I rate the two fly-halves on what I consider to be the most important elements of the No. 10 role.

Attribute George Ford Owen Farrell
Attack 8 7
Defence 7 9
Kicking from the tee 7 9
Tactical kicking 9 8
Game management 8 8
Passing 9 7
Total 48/60 48/60

As you can see, this little exercise settled nothing, but I think that if push came to shove, and England were facing a high-pressure, must-win match, they would opt for Owen Farrell, just as Stuart Lancaster did (unsuccessfully, of course) at the 2015 World Cup.

In top-level international rugby, Farrell’s superior goal-kicking is probably worth an extra half a point.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 23: Owen Farrell runs with the ball during the England training session held at the Coogee Oval on June 23, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

So Farrell just edges it, but England are blessed to have two such talented and young fly-halves.

Daniel Rey, Pundit Arena

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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.