Owen Farrell's decision to take break from international rugby is underappreciated - Joe Marler

The England and Harlequins prop says Owen Farrell 'gets very little back, in terms of appreciation, or public appreciation'

Joe Marler expressed regret over what he sees as a lack of recognition for Owen Farrell following the England skipper's decision to step down from Test match rugby.

The 32-year-old will be absent from the upcoming Six Nations as he takes a break from Test matches to prioritise his and his family's mental well-being. While continuing to play for and lead Saracens, the fly-half plans to take a complete rugby hiatus in either February or March.

Amidst these developments, Ireland coach Andy Farrell criticised the negative attention surrounding his son, particularly after the incident where the 112-cap star received a red card in a World Cup warm-up match against Wales.

Additionally, Farrell himself spoke out against the social media abuse directed at Tom Curry during the World Cup, showing his concern over the harmful online behavior. Saracens coach Mark McCall also voiced criticism, specifically toward segments of the mainstream media's scrutiny of Farrell's decision to take a break from international duties.

“It’s a big call for Faz, he’s stepped away to protect his and his family’s mental well-being,” Marler told talkSPORT.

“I suspect he’s probably just shattered; he’s been going since he was 20. And he’s got his own reasons for it, and we can only speculate on some of the stuff he’s put out about it.

“The fact he’s the quarter-back, the general of the team naturally as well as the captain, yeah, there’s a lot of pressure on him.

“And I guess it’s not helped when he puts so much into it and he gets very little back, in terms of appreciation, or public appreciation. I think he’s underappreciated.

“For Faz, I’m gutted for him, I’m gutted for the England team as well, because he’s a world-class player.”