Eddie Jones: Lions disadvantaged by "the influence of the Welsh coaches"

The 41-man squad travel to New Zealand on Monday

BY Daniel Kelly 09:54 Monday 29 May 2017, 9:54 29 May 2017

England head coach Eddie Jones and Wales' head coach Warren Gatland at the 2016 Six Nations launch. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie

The British and Irish Lions travel to New Zealand on Monday, hoping to become the first Lions to win a Test series there since 1971.

One man who is not sure the Lions will succeed is Eddie Jones. The England head coach will be in Argentina with his squad, when the Lions (which includes 15 English players) are in New Zealand.

Speaking to two-time Lions tourist Brian Moore on The Telegraph's Full Contact podcast, Jones said he expects the team to "struggle" against the back-to-back World Champions.

"I think they’ve picked a certain style of team based on the influence of the Welsh coaches, so I think they’re looking to attack like Wales, with big gain-line runners, with not much ball movement, and I think you struggle to beat the All Blacks like that."

Lions head coach Warren Gatland is using Rob Howley and Neil Jenkins as two of his five coaches. The duo work with Gatland with Wales as well.

The First Test takes place in Auckland on June 24th, and Jones has warned of a "tough old series" if Gatland's side lose in Eden Park.

Some high-profile England players such as captain Dylan Hartley and Mike Brown were not selected in the squad. Jones doesn't have much sympathy for any of the players who did not make Gatland's final cut.

"I think if you haven’t been picked in the Lions, and 41 players go, there’s something in your game that’s not good enough."

Jones will be focused on England's tour of Argentina, but he will have an eye on the goings on in New Zealand.


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