LIVE: OTB Breakfast

07:30 AM-10:00 AM

LIVE: OTB Breakfast


REACTION: Ireland's loss to France, missing out on Six Nations title

After England beat Italy by 29 points earlier in the day, Ireland knew exactly what they had to d...

After England beat Italy by 29 points earlier in the day, Ireland knew exactly what they had to do on Saturday against France in order to win the 2020 Six Nations Championship.

The visitors went into the match knowing that all they needed to do was win by six or more points, or win with a bonus point in order to secure the 2020 championship.

Andy Farrell's men would be quietly confident heading into the match, with recent history being on the side of the visitors.

Ireland and France battled for the early supremacy, particularly at scrum time.

It was the visitors that let slip the first points, though, as Gael Fickou and Antoine Dupont combined to score the opening try of the match.

Ireland, not to be outdone, came close to scoring their first try moments later, though, as Hugo Keenan was prevented from scoring off of a chip kick by cynical play from the French fullback.

Anthony Bouthier was given a yellow card, but Keenan was denied a penalty try and France kept them from scoring in good field position.

Ireland eventually got their try through the power of the centurion Healy, who crashed over the line to close the posts to allow Johnny Sexton to level the scores.

With the wind in their sails, Ireland began to dominate the territory stats. Sexton took his side into the lead for the first time in the match after the visitors were awarded a penalty for offsides in the 25th minute.

France were right back in it, however, as a lapse in Irish concentration allowed allowed Francois Cros to hack the ball into Ireland's in-goal area.

Caelan Doris was shown yellow for his early tackle on Cros, which also resulted in a penalty try and France going back into the lead.

A penalty to Sexton kept Ireland back within a single point just after the half hour mark. This was wiped away shortly after, though, as Ntamack added a penalty of his own with two minutes left of the first half.

Ireland were unable to use their field position in the final minute of the half to their advantage, and France shut them down on their own try line to head into the half leading by four.

The French were on fire in the beginning of the second half, scoring in the first three minutes through a combination of Fickou, Dupont and Ntamack. The French pivot missed the conversion, but slotted a penalty a few minutes later,

France kept the scoreboard ticking over with a number of penalties ahead of the hour mark.

It took a moment of brilliance from Robbie Henshaw to spark the Irish players back to life and bring them back into the match.

In the final ten minutes of the match, France sealed their victory with a great try off of an Ntamack break that was finished off by Virimi Vakatawa.

Ntamack brought the lead out to 15 points, and all but secured the victory for Les Bleus.

Jacob Stockdale was able to get a consolation try on the final whistle, however all it did was secure the fact that England would be crowned 2020 Six Nations Champions.

Team of Us. Everyone In.

Vodafone. The main sponsor of the Irish Rugby Team

Download the brand new OffTheBall App in the Play Store & App Store right now! We've got you covered!

Subscribe to OffTheBall's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.

Read more about

2020 Six Nations Championship England France Ireland Italy Scotland Six Nations Wales