Brian O’Driscoll Has His Say On The Carbery/Byrne To Ulster Situation

Basket case.

Brian O’Driscoll has had his say on Ross Byrne or Joey Carbery potentially moving to Ulster next season to replace the recently terminated Paddy Jackson.

Joe Schmidt and David Nucifora have reportedly met with Leo Cullen and give the Leinster head coach an ultimatum – choose who you want to keep, the other goes to Ulster.

O’Driscoll says it’s a tricky situation. He says whichever player goes will be leaving a ‘winning culture’. But at the same time he reckons someone has to go to get game time.

“That’s the problem with your second and third string players, you don’t want them to be THAT good. You want them to be good but you don’t want them to be really impressive because others will come looking for them.” O’Driscoll told Off The Ball AM

“It’s tricky for them because they are going to leave, Carbery or Byrne, a winning culture, a winning environment.

“Things are clearly not going right at Ulster. They don’t have a coach and it’s a little bit of a basket case at the moment.

“I think it’s more likely to be Ross Byrne who will want to go and get more game time that is if Carbery is used a little more often at 10.

“Joe Schmidt has been pulling his hair out that Carbery has only had one outing for Leinster starting in the 10 jersey and he’s his back-up number 10. That’s not ideal.

“Someone’s going to move and probably very soon just to get game time because you can’t have quality three quality operators at 10.”

Both players are reportedly unwilling to make the move, and O’Driscoll says it’s completely understandable, given where Leinster are now and where Ulster are.

“I would too because there is a good chance you’re going to be winning medals or in the hunt for winning medals and at the moment, Ulster are a while away from that.

“I wouldn’t be in a rush at the moment and that wouldn’t be my first port of call but maybe they will be encouraged or Joe Schmidt and the IRFU will put an arm around their shoulder and be told that if they have aspirations maybe they need to go and play more regular football.

“Ross Byrne has really grown this year and he’s got a lot more game time than he would have imagined.

“He looked like a nice, solid players and he’s really came on.

“Joey is a bit looser and he needs to tighten up whereas Ross needs to expand his game a little bit to have more elements to his game.”

O’Driscoll admitted Munster could also be in the market for a good ten, given Keatley’s form and Bleyendaal’s injury problems.

“On the basis of yesterday, I don’t think Ian Keatley had his greatest game. Tyler Bleyendaal is gone and had another neck surgery as far as I know and two neck surgeries for any professional athlete… I’d be concerned about that as to whether he’s going to come back into the game or not.

“Keatley has been solid this season, better than other years but is that enough to go and win Europe? I’m not entirely sure.

“When Ian Madigan was leaving, Munster supporters were shouting from the rooftops, ‘We’ll gladly take him, why is he leaving?’

“Whether there is a spot for him to come back into one of the provincial team, I know he’s on big money in Bristol and whether the IRFU are willing to pony up remains to be seen.

“There are plenty of good outhalves to go around, I just don’t know whether we’re willing to hand ours over.”

Follow Me