Ireland v Scotland: Everything you need to know

Six Nations climax: When is it on, where can I watch it and what is at stake?

Scotland's Pierre Schoeman (centre) is tackled by Ireland's Josh van der Flier (right) during the Rugby World Cup 2023, Pool B match at Stade de France in Paris, France. Picture date: Saturday October 7, 2023.
Ireland v Scotland - Rugby World Cup 2023 - Pool B - Stade de France Ireland take on Scotland in their final match of the 2024 Six Nations on Saturday (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Ireland face Scotland in their final fixture of the Six Nations. Andy Farrell’s men are looking to secure back-to-back championships with a victory over Scotland while the visitors will be looking to end the competition on a high.

Ireland’s 23-22 defeat to England in Twickenham ended their Grand Slam ambitions last Saturday but the title is still well within their reach.

Scotland are coming off a shock defeat to Italy in what has been a disappointing campaign for them, despite their win over England in the Calcutta Cup match.

Speculation surrounding manager Gregor Townsend’s future has overshadowed the fixture for the Scots, but his side will be looking to prove critics wrong with a strong victory against the leaders.

When is the match?

The match will kick-off on Saturday, March 16 at 4.45pm.

Where is the match?

Ireland will host Scotland at the Aviva Stadium. Ireland are unbeaten at home in the tournament, beating Wales and Italy while only conceding seven points at the Dublin venue.

How do I watch the game?

The game will be televised on ITV, ITVX and Virgin Media One.

Who is the referee?

The match will be refereed by England’s Matthew Carley.

What form are the teams in?

Ireland sit top of the table with three wins out of four with a defeat to England in London last time out. They remain unbeaten at home and are favourites going into the fixture.

Historically this fixture has swayed between green and blue. In 141 matches, Ireland have won 70 and Scotland has won 66.

Ireland won the last fixture at Murrayfield in 2023 on their way to a third Six Nations Grand Slam.

The home side come into the game with their longest winning streak in the fixture. They have won their last nine fixtures between the two, including last year’s meeting which they won by a record margin of 22 points.

Scotland came off the back of a shock defeat to Italy. It was the Italian’s first win in the Six Nations for seven years.

Gregor Townsend has been facing increasing pressure following poor performances and last weekend’s defeat.

He remains focused on the task at hand and wants to end the tournament on a high but is aware of the test Ireland will bring: “Ireland are going to play well against us, they’re a quality side. We have to be at our very best to win.”

What are teams?

Andy Farell names an unchanged squad despite last week’s defeat to England.

There are some major changes to the replacements as Ireland opt back to five forwards and three backs.

Nash remains in the squad despite being taken off for a head injury last week.

Scotland have done the same with their bench and made two changes to their squad.

Stafford McDowall will make his Six Nations debut at inside centre.

Toulon scrum-half Ben White will replace George Horne who moves to the bench. Cameron Redpath and Kyle Rowe will join him on the bench.

Ireland: Keenan; Nash, Aki, Henshaw, Lowe; Crowley, Gibson-Park; Sheehan, Porter, Furlong; McCarthy, Beirne, O’Mahony (C), Van der Flier, Doris.

Replacements: Kelleher, Bealham, Baird, Healy, Conan, Murray, H Byrne, Ringrose.

Scotland: Kinghorn, Steyn, McDowall, Russell, Van Der Mewe, Jones, White; Schoeman, Turner, Z Fagerson, Gilchrist, Cummings, Christie, Darge, Dempsey.

Replacements: Ashman, Millar-Mills, Sutherland, Horne, M Fagerson, Rowe, Redpath.