Ireland team to play Samoa

logoJoe Schmidt has named his first Ireland team, to take on Samoa this weekend. Paul O’Connell has been named Ireland captain, but as he is on the bench vice-captain Jamie Heaslip will lead the team out this weekend.

Paddy Jackson gets the nod at fly-half ahead of Ian Madigan, while Fergus McFadden joins Tommy Bowe and Rob Kearney in an experienced back three. Continuing that theme, Gordon D’Arcy and Brian O’Driscoll rekindle their partnership in the midfield.

Jack McGrath wins his first cap at loosehead, while there is a grand total of nine British and Irish Lions in the squad – six in the starting XV, and three on the bench.

Ireland team to play Samoa:
15. Rob Kearney
14. Tommy Bowe
13. Brian O’Driscoll
12. Gordon D’Arcy
11. Fergus McFadden
10. Paddy Jackson
9. Conor Murray
8. Jamie Heaslip (c)
7. Chris Henry
6. Peter O’Mahony
5. Devin Toner
4. Mike McCarthy
3. Mike Ross
2. Rory Best
1. Jack McGrath

16. Sean Cronin
17. Cian Healy
18. Declan Fitzpatrick
19. Paul O’Connell
20. Sean O’Brien
21. Eoin Reddan
22. Ian Madigan
23. Dave Kearney

11 thoughts on “Ireland team to play Samoa

  1. Benjit.. Sexton’s got a tightness in his hip flexor. Couldn’t train on Tuesday or Wednesday so doesn’t make the 23. Schmidt says he’ll benefit from a week off given his playing commitments in France, but will be available for Aus and BNZ.

  2. Shame this is Samoa’s first game, with their limited prep time together they are at a bit of a disadvantage.

    However with the sad news of the passing of Samoan legend, Peter Fatiolofa, this is probably going to be one of the most emotionally fired up Samoan sides ever. Ireland had better be prepared for a battering.

    1. Agreed, Matt. Samoas other games are against (correct me if I’m wrong) the French BaBas and Georgia – so they’ll definitely be more concerned with this match than the rest of the tour. I predict they will run harder than ever, and I expect the Samoans will do most of their battering down the 10 channel.

      In fact, it’s that likely route that makes me think the inclusion of D’Arcy over someone like a Marshall (or even a Madigan) was partly to mitigate against exactly that.

      However, the power coming off the Irish bench around the 55 minute mark (POC, SOB, Healy) makes me confident of Ireland by 15.

      1. don’t understand d’arcy over marshall, he has nothing in his game that marshall doesn’t, as good as the samoans are it’s not like we need incredibly experienced players to help us over the line, marshall offers far more.

      2. They were leading France going into the last quarter as well last year (outscored them 2 tries to 1), so I think they will be relishing another crack at those guys.

        Last year they played Canada a week before Wales so were better prepared, in the summer the had a shambolic outing against the Golden Lions, before pulverising Scotland the following week. Ultimately I think the lack of prep time will be decisive, but it will be a painful victory for Ireland though!

  3. If this is the new coaches team it does not look good for Irish rugby for the next 4 years!! He has the perfect opportunity to try a few things before the next world cup and yet he decides to go down the kidney route? (d’arcy, toner, McFadden, McCarthy). All these players are not world class, and could be replaced by Madigan, Marshall, touhy, etc!

    I really thought having a nz coach may see Ireland change its previously tried and failed attempts at building the squad around Leinster, I am wrong. Schmidt is a puppet for the Irfu. I see a painful next 2 years at least, and a very painful Saturday evening

    1. Jesus lad. Give him a chance. Toner has been playing well this year. He is a good line out operator and doesn’t get turned over as much as touhy in contact.

      I agree that d’arcy is the wrong selection as Marshall without a doubt should be in there. Madigan has had limited game time and hence is on the bench.

      The selection seems positive with room for improvement but as a multi h cup winner I trust him.

  4. Does anyone else think marty moore is probaly a stronger scrumager than fitzpatric and prob better around the park maybe fitzs just gets the nod on experence and has probaly had more time in camp.

  5. I’d say he is better around the park for sure, but i think deccie has him in the scrum, that’s really the only bow to Fitzpatricks game is his scrummaging and I’d say he’d take Moore there, but he’s definitely not offering much over the pitch!

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