As for the validity of the reviews of the six English nations that have just taken place, we all want them to change from them, including making Eddie sympathetic, maybe even humble. We have a really talented and likeable team, but for whatever reason, the press and scholars in general have it for Eddie, because we’ve all seen it. People around Eddie’s review, and indeed Eddie himself, seem to be on their own. I’m not suggesting he open a game book, I’m just saying you can’t do it alone, Eddie.
I can recognize arrogance quite far, because I was relatively good at it myself, and Jones seems too arrogant for it all. Why you should have a review, say the review was good, but then you feel like you don’t have to make big changes. He was right when he said that he had received “fantastic support” from the RFU, but I am also not sure whether he fulfilled this support. They have to let people come back so they don’t think there’s an arrogant overseas coach for the money. And let’s be honest, if he was English, maybe we’d give him more freedom.
As for the staff for the upcoming training camp, I’m looking forward to seeing some of the new younger guys. But normally you would look at such a group and you would be thrilled that after his miraculous attempt, Henry Arundell and Will Joseph will look like a young, fast talent. And then you remember what happened in previous years with prospects who were chosen to be beaten in training in England and then went home so they would never see them again.
Honestly, I’m bored of beating Eddie because that’s all I do and nothing will change. So instead, let’s all go after him and see what we can do to help England at the 17-month World Cup. To achieve this, we must all be on the same path, we must all be honest with each other and, above all, in terms of internal performance and external support. But we also have to focus.
What I would like to try and run is the movement of people trying to get behind the team, behind Eddie, when it comes down to it, and try to push our team across the line. There is enough talent in this team to win the Rugby World Cup. Right now, most people would say it’s unlikely given the way South Africa, France, New Zealand and Ireland play. But it is not inconceivable for England to get to the semifinals and then anything is possible.