The Big Winners & Losers Following Andy Farrell’s Ireland Squad Announcement

Winners & losers.

With Ireland’s penultimate 2020 Six Nations clash with Italy fast approaching, head coach Andy Farrell and his coaching ticket named a 35-man squad this morning with no fewer than six uncapped players named.

Ireland are still in with a chance of winning the championship should they get maximum points against Italy and France in their final two fixtures but a lot has changed since they last took the field against England way back in February.

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Some new players have come into the spotlight with some taking a step back as the men in green look to continue to build in this new cycle ahead of France 2023. As always there will be plenty of delight for players who have made the cut but equally plenty of disappointment for players who haven’t been included this time around.

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Episode 8 has arrived – a full day early this week featuring Eddie Jones, Jamie Heaslip, Ronan Kelleher and Felipe Contepomi. 🎙 – Jason & Jamie Heaslip look back on the Irish provinces in the PRO14 over the weekend and look forward to the next round. ☘️ – Munster's last-minute heroics, a tough game for Ulster, the Bundee Aki show and business as usual for Leinster. 🏉 – Felipe Contepomi on Johnny Sexton's injury, the tighthead situation with Porter/Furlong and if the PRO14 is adequate preparation. 🤔 – Ronan Kelleher on his Ireland ambitions and finally playing an away game. ✈️ – The absolutely crazy fiasco with Sale Sharks in the English Premiership. 🤯 – Eddie Jons on rugby's financial problems, Manu Tuilagi's injury and adapting to the new breakdown interpretations. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Available now wherever you get your podcasts. 🎧

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Here are the biggest winners and losers from this morning’s announcement.

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Episode 8 has arrived – a full day early this week featuring Eddie Jones, Jamie Heaslip, Ronan Kelleher and Felipe Contepomi. 🎙 – Jason & Jamie Heaslip look back on the Irish provinces in the PRO14 over the weekend and look forward to the next round. ☘️ – Munster's last-minute heroics, a tough game for Ulster, the Bundee Aki show and business as usual for Leinster. 🏉 – Felipe Contepomi on Johnny Sexton's injury, the tighthead situation with Porter/Furlong and if the PRO14 is adequate preparation. 🤔 – Ronan Kelleher on his Ireland ambitions and finally playing an away game. ✈️ – The absolutely crazy fiasco with Sale Sharks in the English Premiership. 🤯 – Eddie Jons on rugby's financial problems, Manu Tuilagi's injury and adapting to the new breakdown interpretations. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 Available now wherever you get your podcasts. 🎧

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Winners

Jamison Gibson-Park, Stuart McCloskey, Huge Keenan, Ryan Baird, Ed Byrne, Will Connors, Quinn Roux and Shane Daly.

A massive honour for the six uncapped players who have been called up to represent Ireland for the very first time. Leinster youngster Will Connors and Ryan Baird have taken their chance at provincial level and have been handed their shots at an early age which is always great to see.

Jamison Gibson-Park has been made to wait but will be delighted he’s finally got the nod after impressing since the restart.

Former rugby sevens stars Huge Keenan and Shane Daly meanwhile are proof that the seven pathway is something Ireland should invest in further.

Connacht’s Quinn Roux will also be delighted that he’s back in the fold after enduring a tough time with injury.

Losers

John Cooney, Devin Toner, Jack O’Donoghue and Keith Earls.

Ulster’s John Cooney has had a difficult few weeks since the restart. He was taken off at half-time in Ulster’s PRO14 semi-final win against Edinburgh before being dropped for the final against his old club Leinster.

And now despite being named Ulster Player of the Year and being selected in the PRO14 Dream Team he’s been left out in the cold by Andy Farrell. A tough pill to swallow but there’s no doubt he will come back stronger from this.

Lock Devin Toner also misses out with the 34-year-olds Ireland career perhaps at an end after 70 caps for the men in green.

Jack O’Donoghue will also be disappointed to miss out after showing some early season form. Club teammate Keith Earls also misses out after picking up yet another injury. Earls was in fine form after the restart and will be frustrated to miss out on the international window.