Farrell confident in kids
February 4, 2012
Andy Farrell has faith in a young England side that includes his son Owen © Getty Images
Andy Farrell is confident England's inexperienced side can thrive on the hostility, history and "chaos" that lies in wait for them in tonight's Calcutta Cup showdown with Scotland.
England head into battle at Murrayfield with a side featuring three debutants in Phil Dowson, Brad Barritt and Farrell's 20-year-old son Owen, with five more uncapped players on the bench. Murrayfield has been an unforgiving venue for England in recent years, with two defeats and a draw since their last Calcutta Cup win on Scottish soil in 2004.
England's new-look starting XV boasts a total of just 236 international caps, including Tom Croft's three for the Lions, compared to Scotland's 501.
Scotland coach Andy Robinson warned of the "chaos" that lies ahead for those England newcomers - but Farrell views it as an opportunity. And England's assistant coach believes his men have the brains and belief to make the most of it.
"Is it hostile? It's a great place to play. I think it's exciting more than anything," said Farrell, the former dual international. "This is one of the theatres of world rugby. It is a dream to get your first cap and to do it in a Calcutta Cup game here at Murrayfield, with such history, is extra special.
"It is not daunting, it is one of excitement if anything. If you go on experience then of course we will be the underdogs - but we feel we have a side that is picked on form.
"We have got a lot of young guys in our side but guys who have been playing in massive matches of late. Chris is captain of a side at Harlequins that are right at the top of their game.
"We will be ready for any type of game that Scotland throw at us. Good players make the right decisions at good times. Clever teams are teams that are able to handle all different environments and we have got to be prepared for that."
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