Ireland beat New Zealand the last time the All Blacks came to the Aviva Stadium
Ireland v New Zealand Preview
The 16-9 result in 2018, which came two years after their first-ever victory over New Zealand, was an historic day for Irish rugby. Can they do it again when the All Blacks run out at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday?
New Zealand have had an impressive 2021, with their only loss coming in October at the hands of South Africa. So far on their northern hemisphere tour they have demolished the USA 104-14, beat Wales 54-16 and defeated Italy 47-9. They will want to take Ireland’s scalp as well, but Andy Farrell’s men will pose a tougher test.
Ireland dismantled Japan 60-5 last Saturday, with Johnny Sexton back to his best. Plus, Farrell has an impressive record against these opponents as a coach, helping England, Ireland and the British & Irish Lions to victories over the All Blacks.
The last time they met, in the 2019 Rugby World Cup quarter-finals, New Zealand were comfortable 46-14 winners. It should be a far tighter encounter this weekend.
In our Ireland v New Zealand preview below, you’ll find the team news, coaches’ views and more.
What’s the big Ireland v New Zealand team news?
Ireland have made a singular change to the team that thumped Japan last Saturday. Iain Henderson starts ahead of Tadhg Beirne at lock, coach Andy Farrell saying Beirne was more suited to the match against the Brave Blossoms.
Captain Johnny Sexton partners Leinster team-mate Jamison Gibson Park at half-back once more, with Joey Carbery and Conor Murray on the bench.
In contrast, All Blacks coach Ian Foster has made 14 changes to the team that beat Italy last weekend, with Sevu Reece the only player remaining. Reece switches wings, with Will Jordan returning at No 14.
Jordie Barrett is back at full-back with his brother Beauden taking the fly-half reins while Rieko Ioane teams up with Anton Lienert-Brown in midfield.
In the forwards, Foster has opted for the same pack that started their win over Wales in late October. Sam Whitelock will win his 131st cap and will captain the side.
What have the coaches said?
Ireland head coach Andy Farrell: “The one thing that has to happen against the best team in the world is that when you get your chances, you have to take them.
“Of course, everyone wants to play quick and the game for the last few years now has always been about transition, both sides of the ball.
“It’s the speed of thought, the speed of what we can get set as a unit across the field, and we’re actually playing against the masters as that type of game, so we want to test ourselves against the best.”
New Zealand head coach Ian Foster: “We’ve watched Ireland’s development this year with interest, particularly through the latter part of the Six Nations and last week’s big win over Japan. They are certainly playing with confidence and ambition and represent a formidable challenge.
“We have no doubt what Saturday is going to bring at a full Aviva Stadium. It’s a big occasion, rugby is back to Dublin in terms of full grandstands, so we know what it’s going to mean here, and we want that kind of stage. It’s big and it’s exciting and is what motivates this team.”
What time does Ireland v New Zealand kick off and is it on TV?
The match will kick off at 3.15pm on Saturday 13 November at the Aviva Stadium.
Referee Luke Pearce, assistants Matthew Carley and Christophe Ridley, and TMO Tom Foley will take charge of the match.
Ireland v New Zealand will be available to watch live on Channel 4 in the UK and RTE in the Republic of Ireland.
Related: Autumn Nations Series TV coverage
What are the line-ups?
Ireland: Hugo Keenan; Andrew Conway, Garry Ringrose, Bundee Aki, James Lowe; Johnny Sexton (capt), Jamison Gibson Park; Andrew Porter, Ronan Kelleher, Tadhg Furlong, Iain Henderson, James Ryan, Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan.
Replacements: 16 Rob Herring, 17 Cian Healy, 18 Finlay Bealham, 19 Tadhg Beirne, 20 Peter O’Mahony, 21 Conor Murray, 22 Joey Carbery, 23 Keith Earls.
New Zealand: Jordie Barrett; Will Jordan, Rieko Ioane, Anton Lienert-Brown, Sevu Reece; Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara; Joe Moody, Codie Taylor, Nepo Laulala, Brodie Retallick, Samuel Whitelock (capt), Ethan Blackadder, Dalton Papalii, Ardie Savea.
Replacements: 16 Dane Coles, 17 Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18 Tyrel Lomax, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Akira Ioane, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Richie Mo’unga, 23 David Havili.
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