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Zebo wants to see Ireland play...
Rugby

Zebo wants to see Ireland players given "licence" to go off script

Raf Diallo
Raf Diallo

11:52 4 Oct 2019

Simon Zebo believes Ireland should give the player more leeway on the pitch.

Joe Schmidt's side are on the verge of reaching the quarter-finals with one pool game to go.

But apart from the opening win over Scotland, they have failed to sparkle in attack.

Paddy Power Rugby Ambassador and columnist for Paddy Power News Zebo is not in Japan, having been frozen out of Schmidt's plans following his move abroad to Racing 92.

He spoke to OTB AM immediately after watching Ireland's bonus-point win over Russia.

"The boxes are ticked but performance-wise probably it wouldn't have been as dominant as we would have liked to have seen," he said.

"You'd prefer maybe a bit more variety in our attack. But they were tough conditions and we got the job done.

Licence to offload

Ireland's play under Schmidt is highly structured. Zebo wants to see more room for the players to express themselves on the pitch, because in his view, the players available are capable of going off-script.

"It's a hard one. Like, the players are there. If the players have the licence to maybe offload and put a lot of width into our game, we've got serious players out wide," he said.

"Keith Earls and Andrew Conway and these guys. And Ringrose, who can beat defenders one-on-one, no problem.

"You'd like to see a bit more of that. Maybe an extra phase or two instead of going to the box kick so early.

"Or maybe instead of just the one-out runners off the line, maybe playing a few more off 10 than normal.

"It's very fixable and it's easy to do. But the players just need to be given the licence. Because the players are incredibly talented in the squad we have."

You can watch the full chat with Simon Zebo above via YouTube.

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


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Andrew Conway Garry Ringrose Ireland Keith Earls Off The Ball Rugby Rugby World Cup Russia Simon Zebo

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