‘I am normally angry when we lose’ – Shaun Edwards fumes after criticism of France’s defence in Six Nations opener

Jared Wright
Shaun Edwards, the defence coach of France looks on during pre match warm up., Guinness Six Nations championship.

Shaun Edwards, the defence coach of France looks on during pre match warm up., Guinness Six Nations championship 2022 match, Wales v France.

France defence coach Shaun Edwards hit back at criticism of Les Bleus conceding nine tries in their last two Test matches, including five in their Six Nations opener.

Edwards bristled at suggestions that Les Bleus have become a soft touch as France look to get their campaign back on track after losing to Ireland.

The Springboks ran in four tries against France in their World Cup quarter-final, which South Africa won 29-28, while Andy Farrell’s side dotted down five times in Marseille.

“It means a lot to me”

Edwards was in a tetchy mood ahead of the clash with Scotland when he was grilled about France’s leakiness on defence.

“We had the best defence at the World Cup,” he retorted bluntly, appearing to have taken offence at the question.

When it was put to him that he seemed angry, Edwards responded: “I am normally angry when we lose. It means a lot to me and I know how much it means to the people of France, the French supporters.

“In the last four years, we have a 75 per cent win ratio, 80 per cent sometimes. It (the Ireland game) is the only time I feel we did not perform anywhere near the level we normally do.”

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France’s worst performance in four years

The Englishman is confident that his side will respond positively at Murrayfield after Ireland racked up their highest-ever score tally in France last week.

“We haven’t played so poorly in the last four years,” he said.

“As I said, that was our one really poor performance against one of the top two teams in the world, but we’re here to improve tomorrow, and we can’t wait for the game to begin.

“We need to give a better account of ourselves in attack, defence, our kicking game, the set-piece. We know we’re up against a formidable opponent in Scotland, who have been ranked in the top five in the last 12 months.

“We know we’re in for a tough game, but we just want to give a better account of ourselves, and obviously, a victory would be nice as well.”

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