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26th Feb 2023

England “don’t scare” Rob Kearney ahead of potential Grand Slam showdown

Rory Fleming

The former Irish international wasn’t impressed by England’s win in Cardiff.

Anticipation is building amongst Irish rugby fans that a potential Grand Slam decider could be on the cards, when Ireland meet England on the final weekend of this year’s Six Nations.

Although a victory over an expansive Scotland side is required first in the penultimate round, the prospect of facing off against the English in Dublin for what would be just a fourth ever Grand Slam is a mouthwatering one.

Steve Borthwick oversees pre-match preparations in Cardiff.

England are a team enduring their first Six Nations tournament under newly-appointed head coach Steve Borthwick, following the departure of the outspoken Eddie Jones after a torrid Autumn international series.

Losing their opening game of the championship on home soil to the Scots, England bounced back with successive victories over both Italy and Wales, leaving them sitting in third in the standings.

However, former Ireland and Leinster full back Rob Kearney believes that Andy Farrell’s Ireland should have little to worry about if they best the Scots in a fortnights time.

Former Ireland full back Kearney believes England shouldn’t scare Ireland.

Speaking on Virgin Media after England’s 20-10 victory over a disfunctional Wales side, Kearney said that “England are improving very marginally. They’re still not remotely at a level of performance that is going to beat the top five or six teams in the world”.

England, who deployed an old-fashioned territorial game plan at the Principality Stadium, failed to click as an attacking force, with Kearney stating that “The game has moved on, and ironically, they were the team that moved it on (in the 2019 World Cup). But then they just went backwards… and are in a trance of just playing some desperate, desperate rugby”.

Steve Borthwick’s side will face France at Twickenham in round four, before making the journey to Dublin to do battle with the number one ranked side in the world.

Ahead of that fixture, Kearney says that the kick-heavy playing style deployed by the English “certainly doesn’t scare me for the 18th of March”, with the four-time Champions Cup winner backing Ireland to get the job done.

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