Win over Ireland will enforce players trust - England coach Steve Borthwick

Steve Borthwick is relieved with England's win over Ireland at Twickenham Stadium
Steve Borthwick is relieved with England's win over Ireland at Twickenham Stadium

England head coach Steve Borthwick insisted that the 23-22 win over Ireland will enforce the players' faith in his vision.

Ollie Lawrence and George Furbank scored tries for England but a double from James Lowe meant Ireland were in front until the last minute when Marcus Smith - making his first appearance in the tournament after recovering from a calf injury - pulled out the decisive drop goal to steer Borthwick's side to victory.

The result also ended Ireland's hope of winning a second successive Grand Slam but they can still retain the Six Nations title with a win over Scotland in the final round.

Meanwhile, England will be relieved to keep their campaign alive after having two tight wins over Italy and Wales followed by a defeat to Scotland in the Calcutta Cup encounter.

“The players' trust in you is really important. It’s vital,” Borthwick said.

“If they don’t trust you, it’s so difficult.

“There was a fair spell through 2023 where we were working on relationships to try and develop that trust. I think what is important for players is to get visible, tangible results.

"I have been showing them the progress they are making, showing them the evidence, but sometimes it is hard to see it, especially when everything is played out under such scrutiny.

“That’s why it is important to get tangible results. My job is to reinforce that and challenge us to be better next week. I want to keep backing the players. We’re going to get things wrong, and we’re going to have to learn super-fast.

"And we have to learn super-fast at what we did well and what we can do better because in seven days, we’re playing another Test match.”

England will now face France in the final round of the competition at Groupama Stadium on 17th March.