Rob Kearney's warning to ignore World Cup phoney war
Rob Kearney believes Ireland's big Test rivals who are tipping Joe Schmidt's men for World Cup glory is little more than a phoney war.
Kearney has warned supporters not to believe the hype surrounding the double RBS 6 Nations winners despite high-profile observers backing Ireland to lift the World Cup.
Former Australia boss Robbie Deans is the latest rugby personality to tip Ireland for the World Cup, but Leinster full-back Kearney believes some eight countries could yet steal the title.
"For the next few months all of these media interviews are going to be dominated by people saying 'no, you're going to win it, no, you're going to win it'," said Kearney.
"No one wants to win it!
"No one wants to say that at the minute.
"So there has been a huge amount of chat about the Irish team, probably because we are back-to-back winners of the Six Nations. Every team wants to win it. Of course we talk about winning it, and every team will.
"There are seven or eight teams there that will tell you that on our day if they perform to the best of their ability they can beat any team in the world.
"And without doubt there are seven or eight teams who will tell you that."
Ireland, having achieved their best ever finish last year when they were fourth in New Zealand, know that victory is vital today in Parma against Argentina if they are to entertain hopes of a similar run in the renamed World Rugby U-20 Championship.
Ireland will also face a Scotland side on Saturday who beat them in the Six Nations and then four days later take on New Zealand when they will be seeking their first win in five matches against the Baby Blacks.