England demolish France in half an hour

England produced a remarkable first half performance to dispatch the French at Twickenham within half an hour, sealing the win before the interval. The visitors were decidedly average, but this was a very un-English display by the hosts.

As the sun shone at Rugby HQ, England looked threatening every time they had the ball, running at pace, recycling quickly and taking every chance that came their way. They enjoyed plenty of possession thanks to a series of turnovers that kept them on the front foot and left France looking like a schoolboy team.

With another try just after half time, supporters were left wondering where the real England had gone, but they did make an appearance for the most of the second half. France began to apply some pressure and string some phases together, England began to give away penalties and narrowly avoided the sin bin. Nevertheless, a relaxed performance can be forgiven since the game had already been won.

Another similar performance against Scotland next week, and we can start rejoicing – we’ve been in the situation before where one strong performance seems to elevate the side above their station too soon. I’m thinking of the Ireland game last year, Scotland the year before.

Instead of being carried away, I’m scratching my head at Marc Lievremont. A ridiculous team selection against the tournament favourites and they win; a sensible starting side against boring England and they don’t score a point for the best part of an hour.

Where were the positives for you? How do you think Johnno’s post-match dressing room discussion would have differed from a fortnight ago? What do they need to work on this week?

13 thoughts on “England demolish France in half an hour

  1. What can I say. I’ll start off by congratulating the entire England team (players/coaches and Johnno). That was one of the best performances I have ever seen England put in. Fair enough, the second half we relaxed too much, but having already won the game, it was nice to see that whatever France then through at us, we simply absorbed, took it on the chin and kept going till the final whistle. I’m not going to turn around and say that I’ve been proved wrong in everything that I have said, becuase at this stage I don’t think I am, however hats off to the boys in white gracing Twickenham yesterday. You made me feel proud to be English again. I couldn’t stop smiling from start to finish and not just because we won, but because we showed everything that I have been wanting to see – pride, passion and flair. We have officially proved to the world we can play amazing rugby, now lets see continuity to this. Again, congratulations

  2. Forgot to add – I may not be a big fan, but Borthwick was outstanding! Credit given where due!!!

  3. Maybe. To be honest, I’d love to say I truely believe that this is the start of something special, but I’m not convinced that the problems have be solved. Although it was a fantastic performance, if it turns out to be a 1 off, I think I’ll be more dissappointed than ever. Fingers crossed that Johnno and the boys will prove me wrong.

  4. I tend to agree. I’m not getting my hopes up too much just yet, but it’s certainly a relief to see some promising signs.

    Still some selection headaches for me. Yes, Borthwick played well, but is he the right man to take England forward over the next few years? Flood was competent, but it was Flutey that shone in midfield – Cipriani has much more potential than Flood and Goode so should he be slightly closer to the squad? Nick Easter did add a great deal, Simon Shaw was pretty terrible…

    The French were useless in the first half, but I hope the players take a confidence boost so that we can see some quality rugby against decent opposition.

  5. A few interesting points:

    1. If England win next week and Wales lose, England will take second place
    2. England are top try scorers for this yrs 6N – 13 in total
    3. England are joint 1st in points conceded – 58

    Now considering all the criticsim that England have received, if they finish 2nd, that will be a remarkable achievement for a team that everyone has been writing off and I for one will try harder not to over criticise them.

  6. Not a fan of Cipriani, but he does player his club rugby with Flutey and they do work well together, so it could be a good option to reunite them. However in doing this, I don’t think Care/Cipriani is a good partnership. I would either go with Ellis or Foden at 9, then Cipriani at 10. Easter did have a good game, but it was his first in a long time. Same with Borthwick – he had a fantastic game, but it was his first in a long time. Flutey, Tindall, Armitage, Cueto and Monye were superb in the backs and Croft especially in the fowards, although everyone had a pretty good game – they all got around the park for 80 mins, secured ball at break downs, stole ball, broke the game line time and time again and defended well. Still don’t agree with some of the selections, but if England continue to play like that, I won’t be quite so bothered who is selected.

  7. Agree it was lovely to watch and a lot of credit to Flutey for the early break which really set the tone. How easy did it look?! That’s the way to play the game. It helped that France didn’t seem to turn up in the first half but that’s only because we didn’t allow them to settle. Also, Monye, Cueto and Armitage looked so much quicker than the French backs – they all deserve to keep their places.

    This has all come just in time for Lions considerations too. If they can play the same way next week we might see a couple more English Lions, in the squad at least.

  8. I think England won because they played rugby as it should be played. They fronted up, in the battle of the packs, and when thye got turn over ball, overlaps or a player saw a miss match they ran it. It was oh so simple.

  9. Gibz. The quick answer is no. It’s luscky for the other nations that the tournament isn’t about to start or England would be nearer the top.

  10. Just had a look at the table and have realised that something truely horrible may occur. Due to England’s thrashing of France they have very good points difference. Therefore if Wales were to loose next week and England win, England would move above Wales into 2nd place and knock us down to third. What a turn araound that would be from the first two weeks of the tournament.

  11. This is one of the best final weekends of the 6N in years – the tournament is still up for grabs and no ones place is set in stone. Good old fashioned entertainment whatever nationality you are

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