All we can say is fair play. Eddie Jones has come in as something of an unknown quantity, we've seen what he can do with Japan but as for what kind of an English coach he'd be, we had to hold back and see what was coming. Now at least we know he'll be someone who's willing to engage in the good old Six Nations tradition of talking shit about your opponents while simultaeneously trying to sound like you're paying them a compliment.
Warren Gatland would be incredibly proud.
Jones was speaking to reporters on Wednesday with next weekend's clash between Ireland and England very much on his mind. Unlike ourselves, England have been able to ease their way into this year's championship with wins over Scotland and Italy and the Aussie native has admitted that his side are going to have to step up considerably when they take on Ireland at Twickenham.
We’re playing against Ireland on Saturday week and they’re the benchmark of European rugby. It’s a step up because we’re going from one tier to the other. That’s the reality – Ireland are in the top tier of European rugby.
The 'top tier of European rugby' may not exactly be a massive compliment judging by what we saw in the World Cup but enough of that. Instead it was Jones turning his attention to Ireland's style of play that has garnered the most attention with his suggestions that he may have to draft in AFL side Hawthorn to help England get used to Ireland kick and catch style of play. Training with 'raw eggs' and 'soft hands' was also mentioned.
They kick 60% of their possession. If we can win that Aussie Rules battle, we will go a long way to winning the game. Ireland are a clever side and one of the best-coached sides in the world. They’ve decided to go that route, it works for them. Far be it from me to criticise it.
It must be said, he's not lying. We're certainly not going to start getting the hump that he's not showing us enough respect. Instead let's welcome this fairly obvious attempt at mind games and do exactly what he's saying and kick them off the field (literally and/or figuratively).
The Six Nations title may be gone out the window but as much as we may have moved on, we're certainly not above celebrating stopping England form winning a grand slam.