Sports

Six Nations: Gatland warns no-holds barred as Wales target record

Six Nations: Gatland warns no-holds barred as Wales target record

We said at half time that we expected Italy would be as tough as they always are in that first half.

Wales' winning streak started against Italy in the 2018 Six Nations.

"I was looking at the bigger picture".

We didn't play as well as we would have liked and part of that was probably due to us not having the continuity that we would have had if we hadn't made so many changes.

From that point, a lot of people will look to criticise us but you have to give Italy some credit for how they played.

"We got out of jail".

Warren Gatland is hoping his players can write their names into the history books with a win over England at the Principality Stadium on 23 February.

Italy: 15-Hayward; 14-Padovani, 13-Campagnaro, 12-Morisi, 11-Esposito; 10-Allan, 9-Palazzani; 1-Quaglio, 2-Ghiraldini, 3-Ferrari, 4-Sisi, 5-Budd, 6-Negri, 7-Steyn, 8-Parisse. We weren't as accurate as we could (be).

"I think there was a lot of frustration in the performance, that accuracy to turn pressure into points was what we lacked".

I have to get Instagram - Guardiola unsure of Mendy whereabouts
But they could be back in second place when they kick-off as Liverpool play Bournemouth a day before. 'Liverpool are exceptional. That came as a shock to Guardiola , however, who had granted the France global permission only to go to Europe.

That won't matter to them, though, after starting the championship with two wins away from home before returning to Cardiff to face title rivals England in two weeks.

Italy coach Conor O'Shea, who ushered in a new brand of attacking rugby when he took over in 2016, could come under growing pressure to reconsider his tactics.

"We were very close in points for 50 minutes where we were fully in the match", O'Shea said.

And it was a decision that was no doubt backed up in the numbers department: Navidi recorded nine crucial tackles as Italy threatened - particularly towards the end of the first half - and carried the ball on seven occasions. "Hopefully we'll go under the radar".

Wales, who beat France in their opening match, dominated possession but scored only two tries in a performance unlikely cause many concerns for their next opponents, England.

Such is the confidence running through the veins of the Welsh camp, their head coach proudly proclaimed his players had "forgotten how to lose" after their dramatic second-half revival against France last Friday.

Allan struck the post with a chance to reduce the deficit to two at the break but he made no mistake from right in front shortly after the interval.

"We're disappointed. Handling errors cost us, but the referee doesn't seem to like us", he said. "Ireland took their opportunities".


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