Two seasons ago losing to the Jocks resulted in then England head coach Andy Robinson losing his job, and quite right too. So shouldn’t only managing to draw against a Jock side coached by Andy Robinson result in sackings?
The old adage rings true, just because you are a great player doesn’t make you a great coach.
The more this England side go on like this and the more Martin Johnson tries to talk them up after such performances the more he sullies the memory of him just over six years ago lifting a certain trophy.
It’s not working, no one can say it is with a straight face, all the talk of a team in transition is meaningless as there is no forward movement they are just getting worse and worse and so much of it can be laid squarely at the door of the coaching staff. The prime example is the fullback, Armitage, in 2008 he came into the squad and proved a revelation, a little over a year later and it’s all gone. Where? Well when he was out of the system he had the ability but since being part of the system it’s gone so the finger can only point to the England coaching staff coaching it out of him. Then we have their other failings, Armitage should have been dropped for this game after Foden’s cameos have impressed in this Six Nations, but no he’s a favourite so starts yet again. It’s no coincidence that England looked far more alive when the substitution was finally made. The only problem now is how long has Foden got before they coach all that promise out of him?
So along with the sackings at the top there should be droppings further down. Yet again Wilkinson got the stick when he wasn’t helped by those around him at all. Maybe it is time to find a replacement for Jonny but did anyone really believe Flood would kick any of those penalties at the end that would have won it, never mind slot over the drop goal. Wilkinson may have limitations on the field but they aren’t in his heart or head. He’s not a bottler. Your life depended on it, who would you really want kicking for your existence, Flood, Charlie Hodgson?
But as I said he certainly wasn’t helped by his team. Where was Flutey, where was Tate, where was the back row?
You only saw the two centres when they were missing easy tackles. I’m sick of seeing Tait flounce about, looking like Harry Potter, tackling like the bint from Harry Potter. As for the back row have you ever seen a more anonymous 6, 7 & 8 for England? I think of Back, Hill and Dallaglio or Dean Richards, Mick Skinner, Mike Teague and Peter Winterbottom. For all the talk of how good the Jock back row were on Saturday they wouldn’t have had a sniff with a perm of any three of those seven on the park. A solid forward base is needed, with an anonymous back row – Borthwick back to his usual self, Welsh game really was an adoration, and the only thing Deacon did all day was pushed the broken down medical cart off the pitch – to go with a second row that wasn’t seen, Wilkinson hasn’t a platform to work off. He then turns around after receiving the ball to find he has no one behind him to work with. A shocking example being a scrum-half making his debut, Youngs, looked better on the wing than the winger Johnson has picked for every game so far, Monye.
And after all that no matter how bad England were on the day, and they were atrocious, and how well the Jocks played they never really looked like scoring anything but penalties handed to them by England and still couldn’t beat us, to take the Calcutta Cup, as Andy Robinson took befuddlement to a new level.
One thing though they should have some national pride in is the new depths they took the game. Forget the mindless jeering during kicks, Bill McLaren would have shown some mighty disdain for his countrymen there, but when they cheered Jonny going off injured after he took a heavy knock to the head. Scummy behaviour of the lowest level not befitting the game.