Owen Farrell ready to disrupt family loyalty against Ireland
England captain Owen Farrell admits his mother Colleen is in an unenviable position as he attempts to deny father Andy Grand Slam glory with Ireland.
The Farrell family’s personal circumstances are a key subplot that goes into Saturday’s sell-out showdown in Dublin, where the hosts are clear favorites to secure a clean Guinness Six Nations victory.
Fly-half Farrell is eager to spoil St Patrick’s weekend party at the Aviva Stadium after being recalled by Steve Borthwick after starting on the bench in last weekend’s 53-10 win over France.
The 31-year-old insists it will be business as usual for him and his father but admits it’s a difficult situation for relatives caught in the middle.
“It’s not weird for either of us,” he said. “It’s probably a little bit stranger for the family that supports me, especially my mum.
“She says she doesn’t know what she wants. It’s probably a little hard on her – well, I know it is.
“But as far as we’re concerned, we’re just doing our job. He’s not out there on the field, it’s not direct competition.
“We’ve been doing this for a long time. It’s not the first time we’ve done this.”
Owen’s sons Tommy and Freddie live at his parents’ house in the Dublin suburb of Sandymount.
Ireland head coach Andy, who is currently away from home as he prepares his team for the delicious Championship final, joked on Thursday that he would try to turn his grandchildren into home fans and have them wear green shirts.
Both boys own England and Ireland shirts but Owen expects them to wear the former this weekend.
“They’re still a bit young (to decide where their allegiance lies),” he said.
“They’re just doing what their grandfather told them to do, they live at their grandfather’s house, so I guess it’s his rules so far this weekend.
“I assumed – and I still assume – they will wear England shirts but I see they are trying to influence them.”
Rivalries aside, the Saracen player is very impressed with what his father has achieved across the Irish Sea.
“Ireland are doing really well at the moment and are aiming for a Grand Slam, which is a huge event for them,” he said.
“You’re flying now.
“You’re not number one in the world for nothing and our family is definitely very proud of the work he’s doing.”
Farrell junior believes he ironed out kicking issues before being dropped for record-breaking humiliation at the hands of the French.
He insists England are far better than this unacceptable performance and have conducted a thorough investigation.
“Obviously we’re hurting a bit from last week,” he said.
“We want to take a step forward, we will do our best and we look forward to it.
“It’s two good teams going for it. After the last week, everyone – especially on the outside – is very depressed about where we are at the moment.
“We are undoubtedly better than that and looking forward to the game.
“That wasn’t good enough, you never get that in an England shirt.
“We’ve been looking at that closely, probably more closely than anyone else, and we’re looking at what we can do better and trying to bring that to the pitch tomorrow.”
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/owen-farrell-ireland-england-dublin-steve-borthwick-b2303155.html Owen Farrell ready to disrupt family loyalty against Ireland