‘This is England. This is Twickenham’ – Jamie George delivers warning to Ireland

By Sports Desk March 08, 2024

Jamie George has warned history-chasing Ireland that his England team are ready to “defend our home” when the rivals clash in the Guinness Six Nations on Saturday.

Andy Farrell’s men are hunting a fifth successive victory in the fixture that would place them on the brink of completing back-to-back Grand Slams – an achievement last managed by France in 1997 and 1998.

England, meanwhile, have been licking their wounds after a comprehensive defeat by Scotland at Murrayfield that leaves them facing another championship of underachievement.

Victory over Ireland would be the highlight of Steve Borthwick’s 20 matches in charge and while the visitors are overwhelming favourites to triumph, George believes the Twickenham factor will level the playing field.

“We believe that we’re going to win. We don’t want anyone, any opposition, to come to Twickenham and have an easy ride,” England’s captain said.

“We have respect for them. I can’t emphasise enough how much respect we have for Andy Farrell and Peter O’Mahony’s team. They’ve got brilliant players across the board.

“But this is England. This is Twickenham. This is home. And we’re going to defend our home, like every Englishman would.

“Ireland have got to come and get the result here. And we’re a team that’s hurting off the back of the Scotland result, hugely motivated and hugely excited about the potential of where we can go. It’s about time we put that out in the field.”

Ireland have compiled an impressive record over the last two years, winning 23 out of 25 Tests and losing only to New Zealand and France.

Borthwick described them as the best team in the world on current form, surpassing even South Africa who retained the Webb Ellis Trophy last autumn.

England appear to have only a puncher’s chance of causing an upset, but George insists his side thrive as underdogs even if it is a tag they want to shed.

“I think historically it has worked well for us,” the Saracens hooker said.

“If you look at the World Cup just gone, no one gave us a chance against Argentina, no one gave us a chance against South Africa.

“I know the South Africa result did not go the way we wanted it to but the sort of performance showed the sort of team that we wanted to be.

“Fundamentally we don’t want to go in with an underdog title ever when we’re playing at Twickenham.

“But at the same time we’re playing against a very, very good team, the best team in the world who we have the utmost respect for.

“I am not too worried about spoiling their party too much. I want to make sure we get our things right.

“If we get our things right then we are going to come out on the positive end of the result.

“That is genuinely what I believe and I have seen some positive signs this week that we are going to be going in the right direction.”

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