Fitzgerald backs Irish to do it again

Date published: November 16 2016

Former Ireland wing Luke Fitzgerald is backing his country to make it back-to-back victories over New Zealand when they clash in Dublin.

The versatile player who won 34 caps before injury forced him to retire, was thrilled to see Ireland overcome the All Blacks in Chicago.

And when asked whether he thinks they can do it again, Fitzgerald said that his countrymen can get the job done at the Aviva Stadium.

"Do I think we can beat New Zealand again? I absolutely do," he told Reuters.

"It's a really uphill task, they will be really hurting. I think they showed a little bit of arrogance there and lack of respect with some of their selections (in Chicago). I think they'll be really, really pumped up for this one. I'd say they'll do a little bit more research behind the scenes on us.

He added: "I'd say they were a little bit under-cooked in that department and, from my own perspective, some of the selection mistakes that they made they won't make them again."

New Zealand are hopeful that second-row Sam Whitelock will return to their starting line-up this weekend, with Jerome Kaino set to revert to the back row after sitting out last week's impressive victory over Italy.

For Ireland, they are monitoring influential scrum-half Conor Murray's fitness ahead of the game, with his return vital if they're to prevail.