England vs Ireland Prediction: Six Nations 2022 Week Four

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TournamentSix Nations
TimetableSaturday 12th of March at 16:45 GMT
PredictionIreland to Win
OddsIreland to Win @ 1.75
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Ireland to Win
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Odds : 1.72
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As we enter round four, the penultimate round of the Six Nations 2022, France seem on track not only to win the title, but also the Grand Slam. There are only two teams that still have a slim chance of upsetting their chance of claiming the silverware, and that number will drop to one team after this England vs Ireland match, on Saturday, the 12th of March. This is what the Six Nations is all about: the excitement building in the last weeks. With that in mind, let's take a look at whom will claim glory in this clash.

england-versus-ireland

Background on England vs Ireland

England and Ireland have been battling each other for rugby supremacy since 1875. There have been 138 encounters in that time, with the historical results as follows:

England WinsIreland WinsDraws
80508

That's a lot of wins in England's corner, but is history the only factor we should consider? Given Ireland's recent form, I feel we should look outside old traditions and see how both nations have stepped up to the challenge of modern rugby.

Factors on Paper

Things can always change on the pitch, which is what makes the world of sport so exciting to watch. There are a few influencers, on paper, that may be the crucial element that tips the scales in either sides favour, however, so let us take a look at what they are.

The Advantage of Playing at Home

All rugby fans love a home game, whether it is the atmosphere in general or the chance to scream your team across the try line. England will be glad to have the psychological advantage of playing at Twickenham this week, especially with how difficult a match I am predicting this one will be. Will it make the ultimate difference, though? England will be hoping so, but I have a few doubts in my mind, and I will explain my reasons for that below.

New World Rankings

With the world rankings having been recently updated, it seems prudent to look at the new standings, to garner how both nations may fare in the eyes of World Rugby.

New World RankingOld World RankingCountryShift
11South AfricaNo change
22New ZealandNo change
34France+1
43England-1
55IrelandNo change
66AustraliaNo change
78Wales+1
87Scotland-1
99ArgentinaNo change
1010JapanNo change

England have moved down to fourth - France's good results in the Six Nations having helped them to climb above the English - whilst Ireland remain stoic in fifth. This is too close to call just from this table. One could make the argument that England's dip could be Ireland's gain, but I think there are more factors to look at, at this stage. This table does at least confirm the importance of this match, however. Both sides will throw everything but the kitchen sink at the game, as this is the one to win if either side have any notion of sneaking the ultimate prize from France.

Recent Six Nations Results

Easily one of the best predictors for a match is recent form, so I have provided the product of all of the first three weeks' action below.

England

MatchScoreWinner
Scotland vs England20-17Scotland
Italy vs England0-33England
England vs Wales23-19England

Ireland

MatchScoreWinner
Ireland vs Wales29-7Ireland
France vs Ireland30-24France
Ireland vs Italy57-6Ireland

Analysis

That's two wins for England and Ireland each. This game is going to be a tough nut to crack in terms of providing a prediction, but I would say that there is a slight hint at a victor emerging. Ireland have the better points difference out of these two sets of results, so perhaps we will see delighted fans in green at Twickenham, on Saturday.

Six Nations 2022 Points Scorers

You win a game of rugby by scoring more points than your opponent. It is as simple as that. It may therefore be a good idea to look at how both teams perform in the attacking department, to see whom seems the deadlier in their opponent's half.

England

PlayerPointsNumber of TriesNumber of ConversionsNumber of PenaltiesNumber of Drop Goals
Marcus Smith4824100
Jamie George102000
Elliot Daly51000
Alex Dombrandt51000
Kyle Sinckler51000

Ireland

PlayerPointsNumber of TriesNumber of ConversionsNumber of PenaltiesNumber of Drop Goals
Joey Carbery181510
Johnny Sexton170710
Andrew Conway102000
Jamison Gibson-Park102000
Michael Lowry102000
James Lowe102000
Bundee Aki51000
Ryan Baird51000
Mack Hansen51000
Peter O'Mahony51000
Garry Ringrose51000
Kieran Treadwell51000
Josh van der Flier51000

Analysis of Players and Points

Ireland, so far in the Six Nations Championship, are leading England in terms of points, and they also have more players that have stuck points on the scoreboard, with 12. England, on the other hand, have only managed to get five players across the whitewash, with one-man band, Marcus Smith, having to carry the team with both tries and kicks. There is a lot more that could go wrong for England, simply by Smith being taken out of the equation, and I am sure Andy Farrell, Ireland's Head Coach, knows this. In terms of an attacking game plan, I would say that Ireland seem more on the money, so this is a big swing for me in Ireland's favour.

England vs Ireland Winner: A Green Light at Twickenham; It's Ireland's Time

I would like to make the usual English argument that England have the better team on paper, purely based on my heart, but you can not argue with the statistics. Ireland have had a much healthier Six Nations campaign, so far, and I believe they have much greater potential to shape this game. Ireland have a huge attacking force that is going to cause a lot of problems for England, and as much as I would like to believe that they will weather the storm, I think it more likely that they will switch off after the first half, when Ireland will want to turn up the heat. Although it saddens me to say, purely for my own pride, I think this is going to be a grand Irish win.

Ireland to Win