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Joe Schmidt Is Set To Make A Big Change To The Ireland Team To Face Scotland

Joe Schmidt Is Set To Make A Big Change To The Ireland Team To Face Scotland
Gary Reilly
By Gary Reilly
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There has been quite a bit said about the changes that Joe Schmidt should or should not make to the Ireland team to face Scotland. Should Sexton be given a rest? Should Payne be dropped at centre? Can Madigan be squeezed in somewhere?

The phrase 'don't throw the baby out with the bathwater' has seemingly been on constant loop since Wayne Barnes blew the final whistle in Cardiff on Saturday. And although Schmidt may not be throwing out the baby entirely, he is set to make some key changes in search of Ireland's second consecutive Six Nations title. The most striking of these expected changes is that that Luke Fitzgerald is set to make his first Ireland start since November 2013.

The Irish Independent are reporting that the man expected to make way for Fitzgerald is Simon Zebo, something which could mark a significant change from Schmidt's regular gameplan. Since the injury to Andrew Trimble, Zebo has been seen as the more reliable option on the wing, with Fitzgerald and Keith Earls finding it difficult to even make the bench.


However, here had been quite a few calls for more of an expansive game and it looks like Schmidt's response to that is to turn to the Leinster man in the hope of racking up the big score that will more than likely be needed in Murrayfield.

In the only other anticipated change, Cian Healy is also set to be named in the starting line-up at the expense of Jack McGrath. The team will not officially be named until shortly before two o'clock this afternoon and we will bring you that confirmed line-up as soon as it is released.

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See also: 5 Changes That Joe Schmidt Should Consider Ahead Of The Scotland Game

See also: Tony Ward Wants To See Some Controversial Changes To The Ireland Starting XV


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