Eddie Jones will know deep down this autumn series has been a great success for England but his coaching team still have work to do
- Eddie Jones was almost downbeat straight after the Samoa game on Saturday
- He soon perked up and will be delighted at England's performances this autumn
- Jones and his coaching team have got so much to work on now
- Next year's Six Nations is going to be a massive challenge for England?
Eddie Jones was almost downbeat straight after the game for the TV interviews but was much brighter and more positive later on for the press and I'm not surprised because deep down he will be delighted with how things have gone this autumn.
Of course he doesn't want his squad to run away with themselves and that's tricky when you have only lost one game in two years, but he and have his coaching team have got so much to work on now and the forthcoming Six Nations is going to be a massive challenge because British and Irish rugby is definitely on a huge surge.
Over this last year Eddie has blooded 12 new players while almost none of the established players have dropped out of contention.
Eddie Jones will be delighted with how things have gone for his England team this autumn
His entire squad look hungry and ambitious but grounded and that's a very good place to be two years out from the World Cup. Saturday was an eight out of 10 performance. It was inventive and versatile and was bookended by a very strong start and an extremely strong finish.
In between perhaps wasn't always so good but this was a Samoan side fighting for their pride and in patches they also produced some fine rugby. The scoreline was a bit harsh, they made England work hard and harried them into mistakes.
But class came through and there were some obvious positives. I have from time to time called for Owen Farrell to be given a game at No10 — to keep his hand in and also because I wanted to see Henry Slade at 12 — but that should not be interpreted as criticism of Ford. He has enjoyed a fine autumn and looks very settled and composed.
England look hungry and ambitious but grounded and that's a very good place to be
His late decision-making and his delayed passing is so impressive, especially when you have a big Samoan bearing down on you. Ford never backs out and buys his outside players time and space.
Jamie George went well and did what he does best, getting his hands on the ball and linking like a flanker while taking care of the setpiece basics.
I also enjoyed the contribution of Sam Simmonds, who is not built like a No8 and probably won't play much Test rugby but who looked increasingly prominent as the game progressed.
Simmonds is really strong and fast on the ball and there is always room for a player like that in Test rugby.
Saturday was an eight out of 10 performance with an extremely strong start and finish
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