Ben Foden: selected in everyone’s England team
Opinions are divided as to what England’s starting XV should be, and not least here at The Rugby Blog HQ. We can’t agree amongst ourselves, and the different teams we’ve come up with highlight what a tough job that Johnno has.
Our selections in the forwards don’t differ hugely, where we agree on 5 out of the 8 positions. Ben Coles chose Tim Payne over Andrew Sheridan in the front row, as well as Nick Kennedy in the second row alongside Courtney Lawes. Hutch and Stu went for Tom Palmer after his strong performances in the summer, whilst Nick Heath is sticking with Simon Shaw.
But it’s in the backs where the selection headaches really start. We’re divided down the middle as to the best partner for Ben Youngs at half-back, with Hutch and Ben opting for Jonny Wilkinson, and Stu and Nick favouring Toby Flood.
At centre, we’ve assumed that Riki Flutey won’t be available for selection, and whilst three of us have chosen Olly Barkley and Mike Tindall, Ben would shift Tindall to 12 and put Delon Armitage at 13. Given that Barkley is nowhere near the squad at the moment, he won’t get a look-in, but it shows that he has some support around here.
Then in the back three, Chris Ashton was a shoo-in on the wing, whilst Hutch and Nick did their best to fit Armitage and Ben Foden in somewhere. Stu would drop Armitage though, and bring in our old favourite James Simpson-Daniel.
Here are our ideal England teams for the Autumn Internationals – what is yours?
|1||Andrew Sheridan||Andrew Sheridan||Andrew Sheridan||Tim Payne|
|2||Dylan Hartley||Dylan Hartley||Dylan Hartley||Dylan Hartley|
|3||Dan Cole||Dan Cole||Dan Cole||Dan Cole|
|4||Tom Palmer||Tom Palmer||Simon Shaw||Nick Kennedy|
|5||Courtney Lawes||Courtney Lawes||Courtney Lawes||Courtney Lawes|
|6||Tom Croft||Tom Croft||Tom Croft||Tom Croft|
|7||Lewis Moody||Lewis Moody||Lewis Moody||Lewis Moody|
|8||Nick Easter||Nick Easter||Nick Easter||Nick Easter|
|9||Ben Youngs||Ben Youngs||Ben Youngs||Ben Youngs|
|10||Jonny Wilkinson||Toby Flood||Toby Flood||Jonny Wilkinson|
|11||Delon Armitage||James Simpson-Daniel||Delon Armitage||Mark Cueto|
|12||Olly Barkley||Olly Barkley||Olly Barkley||Mike Tindall|
|13||Mike Tindall||Mike Tindall||Mike Tindall||Delon Armitage|
|14||Chris Ashton||Chris Ashton||Chris Ashton||Chris Ashton|
|15||Ben Foden||Ben Foden||Ben Foden||Ben Foden|