Ireland's Autumn Internationals victory over New Zealand capped a remarkable 2018 and the rest of the world is starting to take notice.
On this week's World in Union, Balls.ie new rugby show getting the outside perspective on the game, we discussed the wider perception of the Irish team in the aftermath of their recent success.
It was a sensational season for Joe Schmidt's outfit, who are busy preparing for their final Six Nations before the 2019 World Cup in Japan. This has led to big expectations of the team at home and abroad, with Fox Rugby predicting that Ireland will make history and lift the Webb Ellis Cup in October.
"If it’s not next year, it might be never for the men in green, who are the world’s form side and have developed genuine depth and, more importantly, unprecedented self-belief and clarity under wily coach Joe Schmidt," wrote lead rugby writer Sam Worthington.
"After beating the All Blacks for the first time in Dublin the only concern is they may have peaked and don’t have further room for growth.
"But we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt given they have shaken their Kiwi hoodoo and their stifling defensive pressure gives any opponent fits."
The predictions go one step further and foresee a victorious Schmidt will quickly return from his break to coach New Zealand.
It is not just Schmidt who has impressed in Australia. Last month the Sydney Herald reported that former Australian high-performance boss David Nucifora, now working with the IRFU, is someone Rugby Australia are eager to recruit back.
Expectation comes with victory, and a big part of 2019 for the Irish management team will managing how players respond to it. This year's campaign gets underway in less than four weeks, with England travelling to Dublin for a blockbuster Six Nations opening.