Leeds vs. Southampton: 1 hr 36 mins
Upcoming predictions and previews
Collect News Data
Six Nations | Group Stage
Mar 16, 2024 at 4.45pm UK
Sheehan (13'), Porter (65')
Jones (77')

Preview: Ireland vs. Scotland - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Ireland vs. Scotland - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Six Nations clash between Ireland and Scotland, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Despite suffering an against-the-odds defeat last week, Ireland are still in the driver's seat to defend their Six Nations title and will look to do so when they play host to Scotland in their final match of this year's competition on Super Saturday.

Ireland head into this fixture as clear favourites to overcome their Scottish opponents, and the support of their home crowd should provide them a significant advantage, similar to what we saw for England at Twickenham last week.

Match preview

In round four at Twickenham, Ireland's Grand Slam hopes were dashed as they were narrowly defeated 23-22 by England, courtesy of a drop-goal from Marcus Smith with the last kick of the game.

That outcome marked the end of Ireland's streak of 11 consecutive victories in the Six Nations, which equalled the longest winning run in this version of the competition, previously held by England between 2015 and 2017.

Ireland currently leads the standings with 16 points, holding a four-point advantage over second-placed England. If the Shamrocks secure any type of victory or even manage a draw in their upcoming match, they will clinch the title for a second consecutive year. Additionally, a losing bonus point could potentially be sufficient for them to secure the championship.

Earlier in the competition, Andy Farrell's side secured bonus point victories at home over Wales (31-7) in round three and Italy (36-0) in round two. Their campaign began with a 38-17 victory over France in Marseille, where they ran in five tries after Les Bleus had a player sent off.

Securing a victory against the English would have guaranteed another title for Ireland with a match remaining. However, they now face the task of ensuring they do not squander their chances late on, reminiscent of their recent World Cup quarter-final disappointment in the autumn.

Meanwhile, barring their win over England, Scotland's performance in this campaign is likely to leave them disappointed once more, as they look set to end the tournament in the bottom half of the standings.

Indeed, a victory in Dublin this weekend would certainly improve their overall outlook, but it also carries the outside chance of handing the title to England, which will undoubtedly be an even more bitter pill to swallow.

Last week, Gregor Townsend's side were heavily fancied for their trip to Rome, but despite opening up a 12-point lead in the first half, they were eventually pegged back and beaten 31-29 by a steadily improving Italy.

Before that, the Bravehearts secured a 30-21 home victory over England in round three and suffered a 20-16 defeat to France in contentious circumstances at Murrayfield in round two, as what they thought was the winning try was disallowed by the TMO in the final moments.

Thus, the Scots now enter the final round in third place with 11 points, trailing Ireland by five points. For them to overtake the Shamrocks in the standings, it would require a bonus point victory for Scotland and a significant shift in points difference (77), which, in fairness, seems improbable.

Ireland Six Nations form:

  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Ireland form (all competitions):

  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Scotland Six Nations form:

  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Scotland form (all competitions):

  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Team News

Farrell has opted for an unchanged 15 from the squad that suffered a surprise defeat against England at Twickenham in round four, providing them with the chance to rectify the shortcomings from that match.

Hugo Keenan, Calvin Nash and James Lowe form the back three, while Bundee Aki and Robbie Henshaw will play in midfield. Jack Crowley and Jamison Gibson-Park remain at half-back, while in the forward pack, the loose trio consists of Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier and captain Peter O'Mahony.

Townsend has made only two changes to the lineup for the 2024 Six Nations match against Ireland at the Aviva Stadium, both of which are in the backline.

After Cameron Redpath started at inside centre last week in place of the injured Sione Tuipulotu, Townsend has once again made a change in the number 12 jersey, with Stafford McDowall earning his first Six Nations cap.

The other change sees George Horne starting on the bench as Ben White returns to the starting lineup, partnering with Finn Russell at fly-half. The forward pack remains unchanged, with Rory Darge teaming up with blindside flanker Andy Christie and number eight Jack Dempsey.

Ireland starting lineup: 15 Hugo Keenan, 14 Calvin Nash, 13 Robbie Henshaw, 12 Bundee Aki, 11 James Lowe, 10 Jack Crowley, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Caelan Doris, 7 Josh van der Flier, 6 Peter O'Mahony (c), 5 Tadhg Beirne, 4 Joe McCarthy, 3 Tadhg Furlong, 2 Dan Sheehan, 1 Andrew Porter

Replacements: 16 Ronan Kelleher, 17 Cian Healy, 18 Finlay Bealham, 19 Ryan Baird, 20 Jack Conan, 21 Conor Murray, 22 Harry Byrne, 23 Garry Ringrose

Scotland starting lineup: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Kyle Steyn, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Stafford McDowall, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Finn Russell (cc), 9 Ben White, 8 Jack Dempsey, 7 Rory Darge (cc), 6 Andy Christie, 5 Scott Cummings, 4 Grant Gilchrist, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 George Turner, 1 Pierre Schoeman

Replacements: 16 Ewan Ashman, 17 Rory Sutherland, 18 Elliot Millar-Mills, 19 Sam Skinner, 20 Matt Fagerson, 21 George Horne, 22 Cameron Redpath, 23 Kyle Rowe

We say: Ireland 27-17 Scotland

While the title is not yet wrapped up, it will take a huge collapse for Ireland to throw it away now. The Shamrocks will be furious following their defeat at Twickenham last week, and we feel Scotland may face the brunt of their retaliation to that result on Saturday.

body check tags ::

Previews by email

Click here to get Sports Mole's daily email of previews and predictions for every major game!

amp_article__538978 : Collect and Make Data not in DataBase  : 
last updated article - 2024-03-15 21:51:14:
html db last update - 2024-03-14 20:02:00 :

ex - 7200 : read : write cache and make html
Read more!
Share this article now:

Sports Mole provides in-depth previews and predictions for every match from the biggest leagues and competitions in world football.
Sign up for our FREE daily preview newsletter direct to your inbox!
Recommended Next on SM
Breathtaking Marcus Smith drop goal keeps England's Six Nations hopes alive
Man United's Sir Jim Ratcliffe 'sets date for Ten Hag showdown talks'
Sharks hold off Gloucester to win European Challenge Cup
Ireland retain Six Nations title with victory over Scotland
Premier League Table
CManchester CityMan City38287396346291
4Aston Villa382081076611568
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs382061274611366
7Newcastle UnitedNewcastle381861485622360
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd38186145758-160
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham381410146074-1452
10Crystal Palace381310155758-149
11Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton381212145562-748
14Wolverhampton WanderersWolves38137185065-1546
17Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest3899204967-1832
RLuton TownLuton3868245285-3326
RSheffield UnitedSheff Utd38372835104-6916
Scroll for more - Tap for full version

Sports Mole provides in-depth previews and predictions for every match from the biggest leagues and competitions in world football.
Sign up for our FREE daily preview newsletter direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

history www

Man United's Sir Jim Ratcliffe 'sets date for Ten Hag showdown talks'



Arsenal's Ramsdale 'rules out move to Premier League rivals'



Preview: Hartberg vs. Austria Vienna - prediction, team news, lineups



Preview: Junior vs. Botafogo - prediction, team news, lineups



Man United transfer news: Midfielder's future 'hinges on Ten Hag replacement'



Sunday's Serie A predictions including Hellas Verona vs. Inter Milan



Preview: AIK vs. Goteborg - prediction, team news, lineups



Preview: Norrkoping vs. Varnamo - prediction, team news, lineups



Preview: Tucuman vs. Platense - prediction, team news, lineups



Chelsea 'to make official Enzo Maresca approach amid release clause issue'



. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .