"Jesus! I quite like that!" - Joe Marler warms to Eddie O'Sullivan brawl comparison
"Just the clean stuff."
Joe Marler let out a 'Jesus!' when he heard how former Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan described big England versus Ireland showdowns as 'bar-room brawls'.
As a player that strains away from the trite, safety-first answers in his press appearances, Marler enjoyed musing about truffle pigs, sparring with Ellis Genge and TikTok content during his media appearance for England, this afternoon.
Ahead of the match, on RTÉ, O'Sullivan teed up this Saturday's Six Nations encounter at Twickenham in that colourful and emotive style he is renowned for. Told about the brawl analogy, Marler brightened up considerably.
"I’m trying to think of the last bar-room brawl I was in… is it going to be like that?
"Nah. It’s going to Be tough. Ireland are very, very aggressive at the breakdown. They love chucking numbers in there. Off the top of my head, you get 40-plus attempts at attacking our breakdown, from Ireland. So it is going to be a ding-dong.
"And did you say that it was Eddie O’Sullivan that said that? It’s probably a fair assumption. I quite like that. A nice, clean bar brawl, though. None of the dirty stuff. No gouging or glass-throwing, just the clean stuff."
Marler, as Eddie O'Sullivan would say, is the full bag of chips.
'You lot are serious today' - Joe Marler
England and Ireland both know this Saturday is winner-takes-all, in terms of keeping up the chase on championship leaders France.
Les Bleus need to win away in Cardiff, on Friday night, if they are to keep pushing for the Grand Slam. Wales have lost two of their opening three games, but will be no push-over at home. At least, that is what England and Ireland will be hoping for.
On Saturday, they face off in London and Marler mixed jokes with earnestness when talking about training sessions ramping up, under the watchful eye of Eddie Jones.
"Gengey punched me four times," he remarked. "He put my nose that way and then that way. The rest were rib shots.
"The hits tend to be a little bit stickier and there's a little bit more sharpness. Whenever I try to make a gag, sometimes I get a couple of laughs out of it, but today they weren't having any of it.
"They were looking at me like, 'Shut up'. And I was like, 'Right, OK. You lot are serious today'."
WATCH HOUSE OF RUGBY HERE: