"Look, we've just got to put our hands up and say we got our bums smacked well and truly by a superior team," Matt Williams said following Ireland's defeat to England on Saturday evening.
Speaking on Virgin Media's coverage of the game, Williams stated it should not be ignored that the game featured an unusual factor for the Joe Schmidt era: the New Zealander was out-thought by his opposite number.
In the long-run, that is probably going to be good for us. Teams don’t win two Grand Slams for a reason, teams don't put all these wins together for a reason - it’s hard. Everyone probably needed a bit of grounding. The nation, the boys, everyone - so they got it.
Let’s not dodge the truth: We were out-thought. First thing, we were out-planned.
Sexton hasn’t played in a month, Johnny should have played.
We played a fullback who hasn’t played a game there in four years; he has only played 60 minutes since November. I’ve seen milk turn faster than Robbie was turning today. He didn’t look ready to play that position because there is so much running in being a fullback.
"England kicked us off the park," continued Williams.
"Our back three had a bad day. I think Keith Earls is in the form of his career and he made a couple of bad mistakes today. They targeted his wing and they went for him and it was successful.
"You heard a prop say, 'Our wingers were sensational.' How often do you hear a prop say his wingers were sensational? Sometimes they wouldn't know they were on the field!
"Their line speed took us out of the game. I saw Furlong getting driven backwards. I haven't seen that in three, four years. New Zealand couldn't do it on the Lions tour.
"So we’ve got to say, on every front, their enthusiasm, their energy, their chasing game, their physicality, their pre-game planning, they got it right and we’ve got to put our hands up and say it."
— Virgin Media Sport (@VMSportIE) February 2, 2019