Last time I saw this much confidence here was just before the Aussies smashed us to bits.
Ireland are a good side, who lack depth at 10. We seem to think they're shit now because they were beaten by Japan and thumped by England before the WC. But both games no Sexton. You can't play 10 man rugby without a 10.
They whipped Scotland and looked good against Samoa - they're not a spent force and they've beaten us 2 out of last 3. The Dublin game was one which we targeted to get payback for the first loss, and we scored 9 points and were well beaten.
Now I see Coles in the Herald saying 'we haven't talked about what happened last time'. Sounds a bit too much like Cheika not worrying about the opposition to me.
As for us, our best forward is underdone, and our reserve scrummaging has looked a bit shaky. I don't think Cane is back to his best, and we lack the grunt to bend set defensive lines. We have beaten South Africa, and had a couple of pretty meaningless cakewalks vs minnows, that's all. There's obviously a lot of potential in the Mounga Barrett axis, but I don't consider it proven under pressure just yet, and we have inexperienced wings who we know will be targeted in the air. Our centre has been out injured and the 12-13 combo lacks match time together.
Glad we have Owens compared to some other options, but he's been below his usual high standards this cup, letting too much go at the breakdown and offside line which will suit the Irish. He is however the least likely to give a panicky dodgy shit red card.