England travel to Rome with five debutants in their 23
Italy go in search of a first ever victory over England when the two sides meet in Rome on Saturday. Steve Borthwick’s visitors have plenty of new faces but will still be expected to prevail. Here are our Italy v England predictions.
The Azzurri have a new coach in Argentine Gonzalo Quesada who will be hoping to return the side to winning ways after they lost all five games in last year’s Six Nations.
Italy v England predictions
Alan Dymock: England by 13. There is hope for a new Italian regime, and England have a surprising number of new faces. There could be a rousing moment or four for Italy. But this is still a Steve Borthwick-moulded England side, helmed by George Ford and Jamie George, with Ben Earl thundering around and Freddie Steward all over the airways. Expect staccato moments, but England to secure their points in no-nonsense fashion.
Away from scorelines, it will also be god to see Menoncello galloping around again, and him setting up a score with an assisting pass through traffic wouldn’t shock. Nor will seeing Chessum pop up on the wing for England at some point…
Josh Graham: England by 19. Italy are right to fancy their chances at breaking the drought against England given the number of new faces in Steve Borthwick’s team. But there’s a reason England are the only Six Nations side they have not beaten since entering the competition in 2000.
Borthwick’s England may look different but they are likely to grind out a fairly comfortable win in a familiar way. Tommy Freeman should be in the tries if all goes to plan.
Kick-off time: 2.15pm GMT – 3.15pm local – Saturday 3 February
TV channel ITV 1 (UK) – How to watch the Six Nations wherever you are
Venue Stadio Olimpico
Italy v England head-to-head results
2023 Six Nations: England 31-14 Italy
2022 Six Nations: Italy 0-33 England
2021 Six Nations: England 41-18 Italy
2020 Six Nations: Italy 5-34 England
2019 RWC warm-up: England 37-0 Italy
Italy v England team news
Related: Italy Six Nations squad
ITALY: Tommaso Allan, Ange Capuozzo, Juan Ignacio Brex, Tommaso Menoncello, Monty Ioane, Paolo Garbisi, Alessandro Garbisi; Danilo Fischetti, Gianmarco Lucchesi, Pietro Ceccarelli, Niccolo Cannone, Federico Ruzza, Sebastian Negri, Michele Lamaro (captain), Lorenzo Cannone
Replacements: Giacomo Nicotera, Mirco Spagnolo, Giosue Zilocchi, Andrea Zambonin, Edoardo Iachizzi, Manuel Zuliani, Stephen Varney, Lorenzo Pani
Read more: England Six Nations squad
ENGLAND: Freddie Steward, Tommy Freeman, Henry Slade, Fraser Dingwall, Elliot Daly, George Ford, Alex Mitchell; Joe Marler, Jamie George (captain), Will Stuart, Maro Itoje, Ollie Chessum, Ethan Roots, Sam Underhill, Ben Earl
Replacements: Theo Dan, Ellis Genge, Dan Cole, Alex Coles, Chandler Cunningham-South, Danny Care, Fin Smith, Immanuel Feyi-Waboso