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Rex Grossman

Rugby thread (6 Nations, Heineken Cup etc)

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I noticed the SE wales bit, tut tut at not including the rest of your fellow welshmen. Mind you ever time you have replied to something I said in the past you couldn;t help having a dig at swansea.

The rivalry between the two big Welsh cities is great. I'd feel let down if a Jack didn't do it the other way!

Basically, there aren't that many of us in Wales and if we supported our local football and rugby teams they'd be huge by now.

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I should have mentioned this in the PM, but it's ridiculous to assume that the only reason for supporting teams from elsewhere is because they're "higher in the league". There are 101 valid reasons for supporting clubs from elsewhere, beyond the glory hunt.

To be honest, your mentioning the Welsh rugby teams was a better argument, as Cardiff are comprised mostly from non-Welsh players and don't even play in the Welsh league.

I know you and I have found some common ground via PM but I'll reply to this for other people's benefit.

Firstly, if it's not the "higher in the league factor" why do people in Wales never pick Bournemouth, Crewe or Darlington. Why is always Man U, Liverpool or Arsenal?

CCFC play in the English league because they were invited in more than 100 years ago. The Welsh League started about 15 years ago. Yes, mostly non-Welsh players (although their youth team is one of the best in the UK) at CCFC, but Arsenal is mostly non-English, but is still an English club – same goes for any team. Swansea have more Spaniards than Welsh!

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Football has a much lower profile than rugby in Wales, practically everyone follows the rugby internationals, the only time things ever got anywhere near those levels in football was when we came close to qualifying for Euro 2004. On the Welsh language chanell S4C, even European football seems to have a higher profile than Welsh football!

For a lot of people in North Wales Liverpool is a capital city of sorts, which explains the number of Everton and Liverpool fans in the North East. Cardiff seems to far away!

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Football has a much lower profile than rugby in Wales, practically everyone follows the rugby internationals, the only time things ever got anywhere near those levels in football was when we came close to qualifying for Euro 2004. On the Welsh language chanell S4C, even European football seems to have a higher profile than Welsh football!

Yet Cardiff City and Swansea City have bigger average crowds than any of the regional rugby teams. Go figure.

Anyway, Stu and I have been chatting over PM and he's in my good books now. He agrees that our local football and rugby teams need more support (Sorry, dood). Basically I prefer Swansea City fans to some plastic Liverpool or Man U 'fan' from Wales who doesn't care about local sport.

I know some of you will never go to watch Welsh teams play despite being 'proud' of you roots. It's a shame because we all miss out. Real Man U and Liverpool fans don't consider you one of them, and your local club underachieves due to a lack of support.

Let's draw a line under this, I won't get you backing Welsh sport and you won't get me to buy a Liverpool shirt. So let's look ahead to round 4 of the 6 Nations.

SM47: You rule.

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France don't play for the Triple Crown.

But they simply say that Ireland are UNBEATEN in the Six Nations. They've also only beaten one of the Triple Crown teams, so even saying unbeaten in that context is a bit rich.

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Firstly, if it's not the "higher in the league factor" why do people in Wales never pick Bournemouth, Crewe or Darlington. Why is always Man U, Liverpool or Arsenal?

My grandad was Welsh and he supported Southend

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I know the proper form is to be sporting and gracious and commend Wales for a deserved victory, but actually, I'm going to bitch about the ref. Even though O'Sullivan was out-thought and Ireland looked rubbish for most of the match, we would have won had it not been for the ref. In spite of all of Wales's possession, Ireland soaked it up mostly, and we had a few good line breaks of our own. So except for the terrible refereeing, I thought it was pretty even. There were five or six decisions he made that changed the momentum of the game

There was the knock-on he awarded against O'Connell when he won the ball from a lineout on the Welsh line (the ball had gone backwards); the offside against Reddan when he won the ball at a Welsh scrum (he wasn't); a penalty against Ireland for pulling someone down at the lineout (they didn't); and in my opinion the second sin-bin should have been a red card and a penalty try (it's about the most cynical thing I've seen on a rugby pitch since Phil Vickery tripped that American in the World Cup). In fact, the first sin-bin came about because the ref awarded a penalty to Wales that should never have been, too. The only comparable mistake he made in Ireland's favour that I noticed was when he penalised them for a knock-on about ten yards from the Irish line.

Anyway, it doesn't change the fact that you won, we lost, rugby now officially sucks, O'Sullivan has to go etc. and WHATEVER.

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I know the proper form is to be sporting and gracious and commend Wales for a deserved victory, but actually, I'm going to bitch about the ref. Even though O'Sullivan was out-thought and Ireland looked rubbish for most of the match, we would have won had it not been for the ref. In spite of all of Wales's possession, Ireland soaked it up mostly, and we had a few good line breaks of our own. So except for the terrible refereeing, I thought it was pretty even. There were five or six decisions he made that changed the momentum of the game

There was the knock-on he awarded against O'Connell when he won the ball from a lineout on the Welsh line (the ball had gone backwards); the offside against Reddan when he won the ball at a Welsh scrum (he wasn't); a penalty against Ireland for pulling someone down at the lineout (they didn't); and in my opinion the second sin-bin should have been a red card and a penalty try (it's about the most cynical thing I've seen on a rugby pitch since Phil Vickery tripped that American in the World Cup). In fact, the first sin-bin came about because the ref awarded a penalty to Wales that should never have been, too. The only comparable mistake he made in Ireland's favour that I noticed was when he penalised them for a knock-on about ten yards from the Irish line.

Anyway, it doesn't change the fact that you won, we lost, rugby now officially sucks, O'Sullivan has to go etc. and WHATEVER.

No, what about Irelands No. 16 plowing into Ryan Jones while he was trying to get back up, easily a red card and far more cynical than anything else on that pitch . I think you're looking at the game through rather biased blinkers myself. Wales had 14 men for 20 minutes of that match and Ireland didn't look dangerous more than once or twice. Wales dominated the game and kept them locked up tight the same they did to Scotland and much like that match the scores should of been much further apart if not for Wales making silly mistakes in the backs.

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Hard-fought win, but deserved I thought. I doubt anyone in this tournament can match Wales in the second half of games. Gatland must work wonders at half time. What does it say about Jenkins' time in charge of Wales?

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No, what about Irelands No. 16 plowing into Ryan Jones while he was trying to get back up, easily a red card and far more cynical than anything else on that pitch . I think you're looking at the game through rather biased blinkers myself. Wales had 14 men for 20 minutes of that match and Ireland didn't look dangerous more than once or twice. Wales dominated the game and kept them locked up tight the same they did to Scotland and much like that match the scores should of been much further apart if not for Wales making silly mistakes in the backs.

I think the ref called that one spot on, actually - it was a penalty, and nothing more. And yeah, Wales dominated the game, and won by four points. So in spite of the fact they dominated the game, and Ireland were as shite as they have been since the start of the World Cup, Wales were lucky to win, because if Williams hadn't cynically conceded three points instead of seven, the teams would have been equal, and then it's only actually the matter of about an inch of turf and a dodgy knock-on decision that prevented Ireland from scoring another ten points.

Still, England-Scotland, eh?

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The Ireland should of had another 10 points arguement doesn't stand because i could easily say Wales should have put another 20 points on Ireland, which they should have.

I have a choice, stay at home with some cans a chinese and a few mates or.........sit on the second row on the 22 with my misses, choices, choices, what will i do?

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But the Wales-should-have-had-more-points argument doesn't work, because, for all of their possession, they couldn't break down the Irish defence (the missed penalties shouldn't have been penalties). The Ireland-should-have-had-more-points argument rests on only one piece of luck (the ball that was grounded inches away from the line because Wales defended well), and several refereeing errors (the knock-on call at the lineout, and the penalty try that could have been awarded).

Not that any of that affects the actual result, in any case. Like I say, I thought Ireland played badly, and I'd prefer them to lose, because O'Sullivan has, in recent seasons lost the plot a little bit, trying to play an expansive game without building from the basics in the World Cup, and now, perhaps as a reaction, he's got them playing a conservative game that rarely goes beyond the basics. For all his success with Ireland, I just think some new managerial blood is needed at the moment.

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It's quite amusing how all but maybe two Englishmen who were in the thread in the first few weeks seem to have completely abandoned it.

Beyond being depressed over just how little has changed, I would imagine most England fans do not have much to say and probably are not that eager to talk about that.

Wales are doing great in this tournament, why is that not enough for you?

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