Ireland captain Sexton out for up to six weeks

By Sports Desk November 15, 2021

Ireland captain Johnny Sexton has been ruled out for up to six weeks after suffering a twisted ankle and knee in the famous 29-20 victory over New Zealand on Saturday.

The Leinster fly-half will miss the final match of the Autumn Nations Series campaign against Argentina on Sunday and faces at least four weeks on the sidelines.

Joey Carbery came on to replace Sexton with 15 minutes to go at the Aviva Stadium and sent three penalties sailing through the posts to consign the All Blacks to defeat.

Sexton will remain with squad, while Connacht number 10 Jack Carty has been called up in the absence of the skipper.

Andy Farrell will also be able to call upon Munster back rower Gavin Coombes against the Pumas after he recovered from illness.

Ireland beat Argentina 28-17 when the two nations last met in Dublin three years ago.

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    England head coach Eddie Jones has hit back after criticism from Clive Woodward.

    The team's former head coach called for England's situation – including Jones' position – to be "scrutinised" should they fail to beat Scotland in next year's Six Nations opener.

    England suffered a 27-13 defeat to world champions South Africa on Saturday, having also recently been beaten by Argentina at Twickenham, with doubts growing over their credentials ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup following a poor showing during the Autumn internationals.

    With just one win in November against Japan, England's schedule concluded with a loss to a Springboks team missing key European-based players.

    Woodward led England to the 2003 Rugby World Cup crown and he believes Jones' position should be under threat ahead of the latest Rugby Football Union (RFU) review, writing in his Daily Mail column: "England are not just losing, they are going backwards at an alarming rate of knots.

    "A full and totally transparent review must be done immediately to look into where the team are at. As head coach, Eddie Jones has serious questions to answer. Everything must be scrutinised."

     

    Speaking to Men's Health UK, Jones issued a sharp response, claiming he is currently at the peak of his coaching powers.

    "I feel sad for him [Woodward]," he said. "If that is the best thing he has to do in his life, then he hasn't a lot to do.

    "I'm 62 now and I think in pure coaching terms I am coaching better than I ever have. Results aren't always perfect, but I'm happy with how I have been coaching.

    "After this, I want to do something really meaningful. I've enjoyed England a lot, it was a bit of a rescue job at the start, now rebuilding, and I am confident I will leave things in good shape."

    Jones has already said he will leave the role after next year's World Cup.

  • Robshaw convinced Jones is right man to lead England and makes Southgate comparison Robshaw convinced Jones is right man to lead England and makes Southgate comparison

    Chris Robshaw is convinced Eddie Jones remains the right person to lead England at next year's Rugby World Cup and drew comparisons to Gareth Southgate's success in football.

    The Australian endured a difficult November campaign, with defeat to South Africa in their final game capping a worst calendar year performance for the team since 2008.

    With the sport's showpiece tournament set to kick off in France next September, England have 10 months to try and play their way into form and go one better than their run to final in Japan in 2019 where they were downed by the Springboks.

    Robshaw acknowledged it has been a bruising year for England but believes Jones is the right man for the job, likening him to Three Lions boss Southgate, who has defied critics twice in major tournaments.

    "I have been in these situations and the autumn can be tough because you are playing against the best teams in the world," he said at the launch of the Robshaw Kerslake Foundation he has set up with wife Camilla.

    "It is about taking your medicine and thinking, okay, in this competition and in this series we weren't quite good enough, but we can come back stronger.

    "We also have to learn to move forward, you can't look down on it too much because there are still positives to come from it, and we need to think about how we can be better next time we meet.

    "They were saying the same thing about Gareth Southgate and the England football team and now look at how they have played in this World Cup, they have been superb so far.

    "In sport, things change very quickly, and I very much believe Eddie is the right man to lead the squad.

    "From my experience, he is the best man-manager I have ever worked with and his ability to make players better and better.

    "He is someone who will definitely go away and study what went right and very much importantly, what went wrong and why it didn't work.

    "He will want to go back out there and prove people wrong, and I have no doubt he is the right man."

  • 'Look at Mourinho, Pochettino, Wenger' – Ugo Monye questions if Eddie Jones has reached end of the line with England 'Look at Mourinho, Pochettino, Wenger' – Ugo Monye questions if Eddie Jones has reached end of the line with England

    Eddie Jones has lost the support of England's fans and may be an example of a world-class coach who has stayed too long in his job, like Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho.

    That is the verdict of Ugo Monye, the former England back, who says there is little "tangible evidence" of reasons to be optimistic heading towards next year's Rugby World Cup.

    England lost to Argentina and South Africa at Twickenham in November, while beating Japan and fighting back for a draw against New Zealand.

    They won just two of their Six Nations matches at the start of the year, and the Rugby Football Union, which governs English rugby, is to review the team's performance. Its chief executive, Bill Sweeney, has already said results are "not where we expect them to be".

    This has been England's worst calendar year since 2008 in terms of results, having lost six of their 12 Tests in 2022. World Cup-winning boss Clive Woodward, who oversaw the 2003 triumph, has said Jones should be sacked if England lose to Scotland on February 4 in their Six Nations opener.

    A decision could yet come sooner, with Jones seven years into a reign that began in November 2015.

    Monye told the BBC's Rugby Union Weekly podcast: "If he goes, I think there will be people saying it should have happened sooner because of the time sensitivity pressure. We've got the Six Nations in two months and then a World Cup in nine months.

    "At this point where you've had poor results and poor performances, you need a sense of faith backed by more than just a gut feeling – there needs to be an objectivity to it and something tangible behind it.

    "It is hard to find that tangible evidence. The only people that seem to be able to see it are the players in camp because they see more than we'll ever see, and that's fair, but they're emotionally connected and tied to all of it."

    Monye believes the RFU may yet choose to give Jones a vote of confidence and stick with him.

    "They may just say, 'Eddie's our guy, we back him'," Monye said.

    "I don't think anyone is saying Eddie Jones is a bad coach, he's got an incredible proven track record.

    "But when I look at football… I look at the likes of Jose Mourinho. He's still a great coach, but that relationship ran its course at Chelsea as well as other clubs.

    "I look at [former Tottenham boss Mauricio] Pochettino. I look at Arsene Wenger at Arsenal. He did so many incredible things, the Invincibles, but he was just there too long and he had to go.

    "There are so many examples where you're talking about world-class, incredibly well experienced coaches that either stay too long or for some reason there's a disconnect between them and the players or them and the fans.

    "If Eddie is to stay, the number one thing he has to fix is the relationship with the fans. I think the fans don't see it any more. I don't think they're buying into it at the moment."

    Jones has been adamant England are "moving in the right direction", saying after the South Africa game: "Obviously on results we are not happy, but I feel like we are building a really good base to have a really good go at the World Cup."

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