Eddie Jones may resort to cuddling to get his England players firing, but Jonathan Joseph says the hostility of the Welsh crowd in Cardiff is enough motivation for him.
While Jones’ has revealed the way he approaches performance psychology, the atmosphere at the Principality Stadium on Saturday has been identified as a potential game-changer for Saturday’s Six Nations clash between the two countries.
“I quite like it, it spurs me on and gets me going,” said Joseph, who was superb on England’s last visit to the Welsh capital, scoring a decisive try by wriggling through several tackles. “I think that it does that to a lot of the other boys too.
“You just have to take it in your stride. It’s going to be loud and it’s going to be noisy.”
Jones insisted he has been psychologically “cuddling” his England players in anticipation of the renewal of a special rivalry.
On two occasions this week he apologised to his players en masse, confessing that he failed to prepare them properly for their 19-16 victory over France; in the build-up to Wales he has been busy working on their psyches.
“You’ve got to either whip them, kick them, cuddle them, kiss them. You’ve got to find some way to get a better performance,” he said.
“There’s been a bit of cuddling this week, not in the physical sense, but in the mental sense. No one in particular.
“We were disappointed with how we played against France because we wanted to start the tournament with a bang.
“Wales is one of those games where, if you’re an Englishman, you’re going to get excited. It’s one of those traditional games and means so much to their supporters and to our supporters.
“It means so much to our team, it means so much to their team. That always adds a little bit. We will definitely play better, we will play well enough to win.”
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Joseph: Hostile Welsh crowd will fire up England
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