Paddy Jackson's Ireland are favourites for the Six Nations, according to Will Greenw
England are currently on a 16-match unbeaten run inspired by new head coach Eddie Jones, who took over after their disastrous 2015 Rugby World Cup campaign.
They are now just three games away from back-to-back Grand Slams but face Ireland in Dublin on the final day in a game that could end up being a Six Nations decider.
Will Greenwood knows exactly how hard that can be, having been part of the 2001 England side who lost 20-14 at Lansdowne Road – they still won the championship but missed out on a Grand Slam.
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And the former Leicester and Harlequins centre, who went on to win the Rugby World Cup two years after that Dublin defeat, claims this group of players should know that victory in Ireland will be no mean feat.
"Ireland have beaten Australia, New Zealand and South Africa so I think they go into that final game as favourites," Greenwood told Express Sport.
"They will be in a similar position to Wales [who beat England 30-3 in Cardiff in 2013] where the pressure of a Grand Slam isn’t on them, they’re in a home stadium and all the pressure will be on England.
Will Greenwood was part of the England side that lost to Ireland and threw away the 2001 Grand Slam
"Ireland keep answering all the questions asked of them and I think anyone assuming England will win in Dublin needs to understand how difficult and how enormous that task the current players already think it is."
The bookmakers disagree with Greenwood as the majority have England listed as odds-on favourites (4/11), while Ireland are as long as 11/2 because they still have to overcome Wales and France before hosting England.
Jones' men on the other hand face Italy and Scotland – both at Twickenham – and while Greenwood does not expect the Italians to pose any threat, he is wary of the possibility of a Calcutta Cup defeat.
Rory Best and Dylan Hartley will likely be battling for the Six Nations when England face Ireland
"The England Italy game is a foregone conclusion and may end up being a training run in reality," Greenwood added.
"It will be a physical training run but a game you would expect to win and score eight, nine or 10 tries.
"If Ireland can score nine in Rome, why couldn’t we score 10 at Twickenham.
"I remember that question being asked by Clive Woodward in 2001 and Austin Healey stuck his hand up and said “let’s score nine tries” and we went and scored 10!
"And then Scotland come and they’ve shown how good they can be in these championships so far.
"It’s a super Six Nations that will go down to the wire and Ireland will have every chance of winning going into the final game."
***Will Greenwood, MBE, is a Canterbury Brand Ambassador and was speaking at a Canterbury RFU Player Appearance at Sports Direct Oxford Street***