Joe Schmidt: Ireland head coach defends ‘very varied game’

Ireland Head Coach Joe Schmidt
Ireland Head Coach Joe Schmidt

Joe Schmidt has hit back at critics of his tactics by insisting Ireland boast a “very varied game” despite their comprehensive Guinness Six Nations loss to England.

A host of pundits accused Ireland of lacking a Plan B in the wake of last weekend’s 32-20 physical battering at the hands of England.

But Schmidt has moved to defend his approach ahead of their trip to Murrayfield to face Scotland on Saturday.

“I’d like to see how they’d describe our Plan A to be honest,” said head coach Schmidt, responding to accusations Ireland’s gameplan is limited.

“I do think I always get a lot of advice, there wouldn’t be too many weeks go by that I don’t get a letter, suggesting somebody play there, or suggesting a set play or suggesting something.

“And that’s when we’re winning. So when you lose you get at least three letters.

“And so you can expect people to be saying a lot about how we play, and what Plan A, B, C or D look like.

“So I’m not sure how they summarise Plan A, because I think we have a very varied game.

“We play strong off set-piece, we play a varied kicking game, we play with a varied attacking game. And we try to vary our defensive game.

“So I guess I’ll leave them to do their analysis, and we’ll keep analysing what we’re doing, and trying to improve.”