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Saturday 16 December 2017

Foley insists he'll only make Smal adjustments

INTERIM forwards coach Anthony Foley doesn't want to reinvent the wheel. He just wants to keep it rolling forward from Italy to France.

Besides, Ireland have already prepared once to play France: "There was a volume of work going into that game. A lot of that is still true," said Foley.

This is one of those strange scenarios where the coach, parachuted into camp because of an eye problem for Gert Smal, has to come up to speed with the players rather than the other way around.

"You do have to respect the team has come from a World Cup, Christmas camps, pre-Championship camps, two games," he said.

"There has a lot of work been done there.

"It is my role to fit in with the boys and make sure that I row in with them. If I see something that can be done a bit differently I am not afraid to say it.

"But, in terms of the volume of work this forward pack has done over the season, so far, you just really get in behind it.

"There are one or two things I would do differently. They're not massive things. Hopefully, they can be taken on board in the time allowed".

Cohesive

The former Ireland number eight Foley does expect to see a different France from the one that just about negotiated the obstacle Scotland put in front of them at Murrayfield on Sunday.

"When a team isn't cohesive, it comes from not playing together," said Foley. "The more they play together they will tighten up.

"We are going to their back garden. Things tighten up a lot in your own back garden."

Foley also dowsed cold water over the misfiring of the French lineout in Scotland where a perceive strength was turned into a weakness.

"You look at the quality of player they have. We have come across them enough times in Europe to understand that they may have an off day. But, it doesn't happen too often."

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