- England are 2.5-point away favorites over Ireland in the final Six Nations rugby match for both countries on Saturday, March 20th
- The English have won four straight over the Irish
- Ireland are 2-1 straight up in the last three home matches against England, and 6-3 through the past nine meetings on Irish soil
For England and Ireland, it’s a case of too little, too late. Both nations are playing their best rugby of the tournament as the Six Nations Championship draws to to a close. However, both are already eliminated from title contention.
All that’s left for England to do is seek to extend the country’s winning streak over Ireland to five matches. Meanwhile, the Irish will be looking to avenge a 32-20 English triumph in 2019 from the previous occasion that the Irish played host to England in an international rugby match.
Oddsmakers don’t like Ireland’s chances of doing so. England is a 2.5-point away favorite in the betting odds on this match.
England vs Ireland Six Nations Odds
Odds as of Mar. 16th at DraftKings.
Kickoff is slated for 12:45pm on Saturday, March 20th, at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin. NBC Peacock Plus is airing the match.
English Rediscover Their Form
Losses to Scotland and Wales, sandwiched around an expected triumph over Italy, left defending champions England out of contention to retain the Six Nations title. Coach Eddie Jones was being roundly criticized for the robotic, kick-and-chase style his side was opting to play.
Against France, suddenly everything was changing. England (2-2) was displaying a more creative, imaginative, swashbuckling brand of rugby. The English were looking much more like the electric side that reached the finals of the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
At the same time, discipline remains an issue for England. The English were assessed 12 penalties in the match against France. That was down two from their tournament average, but all 12 penalties came over the final hour of the match.
England figures to face the Irish minus center Henry Slade, who was a key element in the resurgence against France. He’s nursing a calf injury and is listed as doubtful. Ollie Lawrence or uncapped Paolo Odogwu are likely candidates to replace Slade. Harlequins back Joe Marchant was also called into the side as insurance.
Irish Injury Woes
After starting the tournament 0-2, a Six Nations first for Ireland, the Irish have won two in a row. They were easy victors at Italy, and survived a Scotland rally last weekend for a 27-24 away triumph.
Even while winning, similar concerns are impacting Ireland that were present during the two losses. The Irish continue to surrender easy tries and are failing to maintain scoreboard advantages.
They squandered a 24-10 lead against the Scottish, needing a late penalty from captain Johnny Sexton to win.
Key injuries will slow Ireland against England. Center Garry Ringrose (ankle) and lock and vice-captain James Ryan (head) are out. The Irish will get flanker Peter O’Mahony back from his three-match ban.
England have won four in a row over Ireland. That includes an impressive 52-17 drubbing in a tune up for the 2019 World Cup.
However, three of the four victories have come at Twickenham. It’s been a much different tale when these two nations face each other in Dublin.
— Guinness Six Nations (@SixNationsRugby) March 16, 2021
Ireland have won two of three from England at home, and six of the last nine home matches against the English. But the injuries and absences will be too much for the home side to overcome this time.
Pick: England -2.5 (-113)