Eddie Jones questions the attitudes of several England players

Published: Friday 15th April 2016 by The News Editor

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England head coach Eddie Jones has warned several of his Grand Slam winners they risk being axed for the summer tour to Australia due to his misgivings over their attitudes.

Jones is dissatisfied with the way four or five of the players who brought the RBS 6 Nations title to Twickenham have performed since returning to their clubs.

While refusing to publicly name those at risk of missing the three-Test series against the Wallabies in June, Jones has made it clear they must use the remaining weekends of the season to redeem themselves.

“If you look at the players we used for the Six Nations I’d say at this stage 27 or 28 of them have played with distinction,” Jones said.

“But there are four or five who haven’t and those guys are on notice that they won’t be going on tour unless they change their approach to their play.

“What they’re doing in games is not good enough and they won’t be going on tour unless they change their attitude. It’s not talent, it’s attitude. They have not put their bodies on the line for their clubs.”

When asked if he has spoken to the players in question, Jones said: “They’ve got the message one way or another.

“I’m hopeful they will turn it around, I’m always hopeful they will turn it around. Players have got to understand this is part of the deal of being with England now.

“I was coaching Australia in 2004 when we put 51 points on England in Brisbane. We knew they were in the pub drinking on the Thursday night.

“If we have any of that sort of attitude then those players won’t be in the squad, it’s as simple as that.”

Jones knew which members of his squad were capable of having their heads turned after England completed a first Grand Slam since 2003 and has even threatened the ultimate punishment: the end of their Test careers.

“Who is on the list doesn’t surprise me. They have agents and people telling them how good they are. They read the newspapers and listen to the TV commentators,” Jones said.

“This is one of the most difficult things about English rugby – everyone wants to have heroes. That’s the reality. These guys get their heads filled.

“You have agents saying ‘wear these shoes, this guy will look after you, you are fantastic’.

“The agents are good-game people, slapping them on the back telling them how good they are. The players get ahead of themselves.

“There are a few guys who have done that and before they left I knew who they would be.

“Now they need to sort themselves out otherwise their English careers will be something that’s a good memory for them.

“And then the only guys they will have to talk to are the agents. There is that soccer mentality here, there is no doubt about it.”

Dwelling on the football theme, Jones revealed that he spent time at Chelsea’s training ground on Tuesday and chatted to their interim manager Guus Hiddink.

“I had a look at their facility and it was unbelievable. We don’t have a Russian benefactor but it would be pretty handy,” Jones said.

“Speaking to Hiddink, who has had an unbelievable coaching career, the problems he had when he took over were similar to England’s.

“He inherited a team that wasn’t performing and had factions. The job was about how he put them back together and lifted them out of the relegation zone.

“One of the things that resonated with me is that he didn’t go back over what had happened.

“He concentrated on what they can do in the future, which was not dissimilar to what we tried to do with England.”

Published: Friday 15th April 2016 by The News Editor

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