Conor Murray has backed the returning Jacob Stockdale to "pull something out of a hat" if needed when Ireland host England on Saturday.

England are looking for a fifth straight win over Ireland and head coach Andy Farrell has recalled the Ulster wing, and made five other personnel changes, for the clash.

Stockdale missed the start of the Guinness Six Nations due to a knee injury but has lined out for his province for the last three games in the Pro14.

Trialled at full-back last year, the 24-year-old, who was the 2018 player of the tournament, is back in the more familiar left wing position.

"Jacob is a really special player, a top fella, and he's obviously frustrated with the injuries he's had," said scrum-half Murray, who also gets a recall following a hamstring injury.

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"He's certainly confident, chatting to him, I am [confident in him] too and the lads are as well.

"He's right there [in the room] so I don't want to compliment him too much but it's great to have him back, especially a player who can break a game like that.

"If it's a tough game, he can pull something out of a hat and get us out of trouble. We're backing him to return to that kind of form definitely." 

Farrell has left Leinster wing James Lowe out of the match-day squad following a series of high-profile defensive errors and has backed Stockdale, who will win his 34th cap, to shine.

The former dual-code England international said: "We all know how good he is. He makes things happen. He’s been out injured and he’s lost a bit of weight.

"He looks really sharp and he’s had a good few games behind him. He’s ready to go." 

Neither side can catch Wales or England in the hunt for the title but Ireland will be desperate to end a series of demoralising defeats, across Six Nations, World Cup warm-ups and Autumn Nations Cup games.

Asked what lessons have been learned from the last four ties, the 31-year-old said: "A lot of things. We’ve looked at over the past few meetings, I think one thing in particular, you’re always conscious of how physical England are going to be, how vocal they are when they are physical, physically dominant over you.

"I think the last time we played them we actually turned up in that area and we did quite well. 

"It was actually the smaller details in terms of the skills of our attack game that we came up a little bit short on, which is usually not the case. 

"I suppose maybe we were really focused on being physical against such a big side against England. 

"So we definitely need to bring that again this weekend, that physicality.

"They are a team that if you let them get on top of you in those areas it’s very hard to play rugby against them so that will be a starting point like it always is.

"Physicality in the game of rugby is fairly important but in terms of our decision-making and attacking we hope to be a little better than we were the last time.

"We’ve been working really hard with the buzz, the atmosphere in camp has been great all week, it’s huge steps and for me personally I’m just delighted to be back and ready to give it a go."

Follow Ireland v England (kick-off 4.45pm, Saturday) via our live blog on and the RTÉ News app or listen live on RTÉ Radio 1's Saturday Sport. Highlights on Against the Head on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player, 8pm Monday.