Donal Lenihan says Andy Farrell's coaching "nous" is legitimately being questioned as he approaches the end of his first year in charge of Ireland.

In a season greatly disrupted by Covid-19, the national team have won five and lost three of their eight tests, but those defeats have come against England (twice) and France.

There might have been a time where it was expected that Ireland would lose to that pair every year and still be able to call the season a success.

But times have changed and Lenihan, speaking on the RTÉ Rugby Podcast, says that the national team needs to be seen to be making progress.

"I think the balance and the mix in that Ireland coaching set-up is coming under serious question now," he began.

"There is a question mark over Andy Farrell's overall coaching nous in a rugby union perspective. It's a difficult place to learn on the job, because you're always under pressure.

"Not only is it about performance this weekend it's about the result as well. They have to play well, but they certainly have to win.

"When you consider we started this calendar year, opening game against Scotland in the Six Nations - that was Andy Farrell's first game.

"We won the game by 7 points, albeit Stuart Hogg dropped the ball going over the line early in the second half.

"How much development have you seen from that team in the last 12 months? I would say very little."

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