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Shades of 2007 World Cup, says Shane Horgan as Ireland continue to struggle

‘Everything seemed to be fine, then a couple of things went wrong and we just couldn’t right it again.’

Horgan on the attack during the narrow win over Georgia in Bordeaux.
Horgan on the attack during the narrow win over Georgia in Bordeaux.
Image: Billy Stickland/INPHO

FORMER IRELAND WING Shane Horgan said he was ‘a little bit worried’ after Ireland’s win over Italy as it gave him a reminder of the nightmare 2007 Rugby World Cup campaign.

Horgan was part of the Ireland side who came close to winning the Six Nations in ’07 and went towards the World Cup brimming with confidence.

However, Eddie O’Sullivan’s men struggled for form in the pre-tournament warm-ups and traveled to France with concerns over their conditioning after a narrow win over Italy in Ravenhill.  Once at the tournament, a narrow escape against Georgia was followed by demoralising losses at the hands of France and Argentina.

“I am a little bit worried, because it just had a similar feeling, for me, to the 2007 World Cup,” Horgan said in his post-match analysis on Virgin Media Sport.

“Everything seemed to be fine, then a couple of things went wrong and we just couldn’t right it again. I’m not saying those players are in the same situation, but there is a sense of that.”

Horgan later added that he could see the similar traits ‘in a very small way,’ but in the here and now, there were enough issues to ensure Ireland will not have a happy camp to enjoy in the two-week build-up before France’s visit to Dublin. 

“Today was the opportunity to get things right again and get positive.

Jonathan Sexton and Peter O'Mahony celebrates with try scorer Conor Murray Conor Murray 'celebrates' his try to earn a bonus point. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

“You could see in the body language; Sexton shouting and screaming when he was coming off, even when they scored the bonus try there was no celebration, in Sean Cronin’s performance, Bundee Aki went off and nobody got the midfield going. In so many areas, you thought they didn’t get things right.

“And it’s difficult to get things right in the middle of a tournament.”

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Sean Farrell

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