Sorry, this story is unavailable
It is good to see lots of Italian born players coming through with Aironi and Treviso. The 2 teams scored 6 tries between them last week in the Heineken Cup, 5 of which were scored by Italian Internationals and all players in the backs. So the confidence in the attack must be improving.
If Aironi can beat Biarritz NM must believe that on their day Italy can beat teams like France and Ireland. Italy have 3 games at home these must be targeted. Aironi and Treviso have proven Italian players can attack well and score tries, international level is harder but the potential is there, other sides may be surprised if Italy play more attacking.
Who plays 10? Must play someone who is regularly playing in that position for their club. Burton or Bocchino? Why not give Burton a go he has played well this year for Treviso, gets the backline moving, has scored tries, makes breaks and keeps the scoreboard ticking with drop goals. He might not be as good defensively as others but Italy must gamble with more attacking players to win matches.
Posted 13:28 17th December 2010
NM has done a good job so far.
He is bringing to maturity Italian born and bred players such as Mirco Bergamasco or Alessando Zanni. He is also giving chances to a bunch of young ones to name a few: Tommaso Benvenuti and Edoardo Gori. T
he Azzurri are now less dependant on foreign players eligible to play for Italy such as Gower, Robertson or Griffen.
Celtic League participation allows players to play at international level week in and week out.
NM has still to improve the game with the ball and try scoring. But now the Azzurri are more concentrated throughout the game and give away less penalties than use to do.
NM badly needs to do well at 6N to capitalise on the above.
Posted 15:32 14th December 2010
Botes will be eligible in June, if I am not wrong.
Marcato is a little bit too fragile to play at 10 at international level, it is the channel where players like Jamie Roberts, Ma'a Nonu, SBW would go for.
Berbizier took the best out of the old boys, but, if Italy has not grown a decent 10 so far, it is because he insisted on old players.
Posted 17:29 04th December 2010
What happened to Andrea Marcato? Thought he looked a good prospect and a potential international 10? Can Botes play for Italy?
Think Italy were better under Berbizier. 2007 6 Nations were very competitive now they are minus Troncon and Pez but apart from that is a similar side. Mallet might have been successful before but as an Italian fan I find it difficult to rate him after playing Mauro at 9 and Masi at 10 despite lack of options.
Hopefully Benvenuti will keep on scoring tries and with Treviso going well could be a good 6 Nations for Italy.
Posted 21:26 02nd December 2010
In my opinion, Italy has not found yet a decent pair of scrum / fly half. I do not think that this is Nick's fault, although unfortunate. Gori had two decent games with Australia and Fiji, Italy's number ten is still a question mark. The game with Argentina was a bad lost, as Italy got the control of operation when it meant. Italy gave away a cheap try, suffered from bad decision of Parisse, and come back strongly at the end. I do not know how many teams could force Argentina with a penalty try.
Fiji was a game in control, very professional rugby although not yet entertaining.
Italy is not that far, it just needs a spark to ignite.
What about bringing McLean at 10 and partnering with Gori / Botes?
Posted 10:01 02nd December 2010
" ...doesn't know a thing about rugby"
he used a more colorful expression on his struggled italian...
c'mon Nick, we like you more than "Mr D."
Posted 13:37 01st December 2010