Simon Maguire
Simon Maguire

12:55 9 Mar 2019



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Former Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll believes the rejuvenation at Toulouse will eventually feed into the national side and Ireland could face an exciting French line-up on Sunday.

The visitors arrive in Dublin on the back of an impressive display against Scotland last time out - despite losing their opening two games against Wales and England.

"He's an exceptional talent"

Speaking on Friday Night Rugby, he told Cliona: "I do think in Antoine Dupont they have a real player. He was excellent when he came on in that thrashing over in Twickenham against England. I think his stats were phenomenal for the 25 minutes he played. He had most offloads in the game, most metres made, most line breaks so he's an exceptional talent.

"And, it's his creativity and what Brunel is now picking, particularly in his back line is the flair and the confidence of the Toulouse team that have come good again. It's that re-emergence of the Toulouse that we knew and loved back in the early 2000s.

"You look at Ramos -  a brilliant counter-attacking try against Scotland that he started - for Dupont that finished it off. And then obviously Ntamack and we know what Huget can do going forward - I don't know if he's quite as good going back. Gael Fickou played in Toulouse before going to Stade Francais. So these players all know each other very, very well and they'll feel as if they have nothing to lose coming over here.

"There's an expectation and a pressure on Ireland so if they can match them for 50/60/70 minutes - it'll definitely squeeze Ireland into producing something big," he added.

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6 Nations Anton Dupont Brian O'Driscoll France Ireland Rugby Rugby Union Six Nations

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