Rugby World Cup: Ireland must ditch underdog tag – Joe Schmidt

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From Michael Morrow
BBC Sport NI at the Rugby World Cup
Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt has called on his side to deny the thought theyre going into Saturdays quarter-final contrary to New Zealand as underdogs.
The All Blacks are thought to land a third World Cup while Ireland are planning to accomplish a very first semi-final.
Despite some poor displays this year, Schmidt has backed the pedigree of his side to issue New Zealand.
You can not go out from an All Blacks side and accept you are second fiddle, Schmidt stated before the Tokyo match.
There are several players within the side which have led to a fair piece of history for us.
Schmidts group choice for the quarter-final included no surprises, as he backs his campaigners whove helped Ireland into the biggest leads to his six-year predominate.
Ireland under Schmidt have enjoyed wins against all three of the southern hemisphere sides.
A first win in South Africa, a series triumph in Australia and two victories over New Zealand – one side theyd never beaten – have been delivered on Schmidts watch.
On last November, the side that defeated the All Blacks on home soil for the first time there are three different faces to the beginning line-up: Robbie Henshaw Irish and British Lions trio Conor Murray and Iain Henderson.
Theyve had some fairly successful experiences together, said Schmidt of the group.
The first win on the All Blacks, the first time we won at home against the All Blacks, however several other landmarks along the way.
Lots of those players chosen were in Australia last summer and have been in South Africa the summer before when we won at Cape Town.
The buildup of those experiences together hopefully builds a little confidence because you will need to have some belief.
Regardless of Irelands impressive results over the past couple of years, theres not any question that the All Blacks remain firm favorites for Saturdays fittings.
Even though Schmidts side appeared hot and cold throughout the group stage, New Zealand revealed chinks and lived up to their reputation as the team to beat on the second day of this tournament with a win over a South Africa.
The All Blacks are constantly raising the bar, Schmidt declared.
Everyone else is pursuing the bar and trying to get to exactly the identical height.
Saturdays quarter-finals winners will meet Australia or England from the previous four at Yokohama.
A World Cup quarter-final against Australia is time to get its Eddie Jones project says former England scrum-half Matt Dawson.
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