Schmidt: ‘We can’t lose confidence’

Date published: March 16 2015

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt has rejected the idea of his side needing a change of tactics following their loss to Wales.

Saturday's defeat was Ireland's first in 11 Test matches, bringing their streak to an end and also snuffing out any hopes of a Grand Slam this year.

Responding to a question suggesting that Ireland need to go back to the drawing board, Schmidt said that it was essential that Ireland didn't lose any confidence in themselves.

"I think that's an extraordinary question in the context of having lost one game in our last 11, because something that was up on the drawing board before was working okay," Schmidt told the Irish Independent.

"So we've just got to make sure we take the best parts out of that, maybe rub a little bit out and add a little bit here and there, and try to construct something that works in Murrayfield.

"What we don't want to do is suddenly lose our confidence. We didn't beat some really good teams because we were no good at what we're doing."

Schmidt also re-iterated the need for Ireland to focus on the win, not the points difference, as the Six Nations is poised to come down to a thrilling conclusion on Saturday with the champions, Wales and England all in contention.

Ireland haven't won back-to-back titles since 1983, when the shared the trophy with France having won it outright the year before.

"We are still in the championship and we still have a fantastic opportunity to do something that hasn't been done for a long time if we can create enough opportunities in Murrayfield," added Schmidt.

"If you go looking for differentials without first of all making sure you have targeted the result, you are going to make it a pretty tough day."