France 12-10 England, Six Nations, March 20
Dallaglio points finger of blame at Andrew
March 21, 2010
Former skipper Lawrence Dallaglio insists RFU director of elite rugby Rob Andrew is the reason England are languishing behind the best in the world © Getty Images
Former captain Lawrence Dallaglio has laid the blame for England's shortcomings at the feet of the Rugby Football Union's director of elite rugby Rob Andrew.
England brought the curtain down on a disappointing Six Nations campaign with a 12-10 defeat to France in Paris last night. It was probably the team's most complete performance of the tournament but the result left them third in the final championship table.
The team have been criticised for some lacklustre displays over the five games, with manager Martin Johnson taking a lot of the flak. However, Dallaglio believes the problem starts higher up the chain of command.
Writing in his Sunday Times column, Dallaglio said, "As manager, Johnson must accept responsibility, but the ultimate responsibility rests not with him but with the RFU's director of elite rugby, Rob Andrew. He is the guy who ensured that Johnson began his management journey from the wrong starting point.
"England no longer aim to be the best in the world, the players do not work in an environment conducive to producing a world-class team and, in this respect, we are short-changing the current generation. You only know how good a player is when he is allowed to work in the right set-up."
Dallaglio claimed Andrew had made a mistake in failing to bring highly-regarded kicking coach Dave Alred back into the RFU fold. "When last did an England team have a good kicking game? Andrew worked with Alred and knows how good he is, so why didn't he make Alred his first appointment?" Dallaglio added.
"This isn't just personnel; it is also about England's lack of an overall philosophy. (Former England coach Sir Clive) Woodward talked endlessly about world-class standards producing world-class players; he got us to focus on being the number one team in rugby, not just in European rugby."