Ireland deserved to win

Other favourites for the position should Hansen step away include All Blacks assistant coach Ian Foster, who has worked under Hansen since 2012, and Montpellier coach Vern Cotter, who interviewed for Hansen's position after the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

The All Blacks boss stuck to his word and even labelled Joe Schmidt's Ireland as the front-runners for next year's World Cup. "We were at home, and they were coming off a long series of games where they have travelled around the world a number of times".

"I thought the crowd were phenomenal tonight".

"That is the only time you do get tested is when you are up against one of your big Test matches when you have the quality of opposition trying to do that to you".

"It's all about prepping the boys as best we can and getting us in the right space".

Joe Schmidt has been mentioned as a future coach of New Zealand thanks to his stewardship of Ireland which has yielded two wins over his compatriots the All Blacks, three Six Nations titles including this year's Grand Slam and 17 victories in their last 18 Tests.

The wider implications could be profound.


What time does Ireland vs New Zealand kick-off?

Ireland's coach masterminded a 16-9 win in Dublin.

Schmidt's ability to spot a potential opposition weakness was also evident in Ireland's all-important 48th-minute try.

Strong defence is the rock that this victory is based on but every side needs a sharp finisher and Ireland possess one in Jacob Stockdale. Ireland, nevertheless, still chose to dust down a classic Schmidt manoeuvre off a lineout, with Sexton switching the ball right to Bundee Aki and the centre releasing the lurking Stockdale down the short side. This time the Ulster winger's chip was flawless, as was the bounce. "Richie Murphy [Ireland's kicking coach] is always talking about how much of a difference chips and grubbers down the line can make, especially if you can get them between the 15 and the touchline". "They gave us the confidence to back ourselves".

Given he was still in Ulster's academy when Ireland beat the All Blacks in Chicago, he was as thrilled as anyone at the final whistle. "For me to do that on my first attempt is very special". "I guess they are favourites".

"Andy Farrell the last few years has been brilliant".


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