Six Nations

England have no world-class players, claims Jones

Eddie Jones believes his England squad possesses no world-class talent, for the time being at least.

The Australian succeeded Stuart Lancaster as head coach following a dismal Rugby World Cup campaign, and has begun his tenure in impressive fashion.

Away victories over Scotland and Italy have left England top of the Six Nations table after the opening two rounds, but Jones believes none of his players can be considered world-class just yet.

Leicester Tigers' Manu Tuilagi is among England's biggest stars and could make his comeback during the Six Nations after more than 18 months away from the international scene through injury. However, Jones says the centre has a long way to go to be considered among the best in the world.

"He's not world-class. He has the potential to be, but I haven't seen him picked in any World XV team. He doesn't play. You can't be in the World XV if you don't play," Jones said.

"I think there are some good young players coming through who are going to break the mould of English rugby. With the right maturation process, I think we have some guys who have potential to be really outstanding Test players.

"There are a lot of quality players in this team who can make the next step to the world-class level and be a very good side.

"I don't want quick fixes. I want to build a team that's sustainably successful. Generally speaking, you look at most teams around the world when a coach takes over, the first year you are coaching the previous coach's team – that's the reality.

"The second year, you can change it by 50 per cent, the third year you can change it by 80 per cent. Which means by the third year it's your team.

"Now that's where you should be at your best. The third and fourth years are the years you get your maximum."