England fullback Brown to miss Ireland clash

England fullback Mike Brown will miss this weekend’s Six Nations match against Ireland in Dublin after suffering a setback in his concussion recovery.

Harlequins full back Brown was concussed against Italy at Twickenham and left the field after 19 minutes of England’s 47-17 victory over Italy on 14 February.

Since then Brown has been undergoing the return to play protocol but the 29 year-old is currently unable to progress beyond stage three of the process.

England management have now confirmed that Brown will miss the Six Nations match between the only two remaining unbeaten teams.

With Brown having started the last 26 Test matches the news is a blow for Stuart Lancaster, but Saracens’ in form Alex Goode has waited patiently for the chance to start.

Goode last wore the England number 15 shirt against Wales in Cardiff in 2013 but produced what Lancaster described as “the best game I’ve seen him play for some time” in Saracens’ recent victory over Bath.

Lancaster added,”Mike and our medical staff have been diligent during every step of the graduated return to play protocol and they will continue to work to get him back to full health. The most important thing is Mike’s welfare.

“We are of course disappointed to lose him but Alex is an experienced international and in great form for Saracens. ”

The likely England team is as follows.

England (likely)

Alex Goode, Anthony Watson, Jonathan Joseph, Luther Burrell, Jack Nowell; George Ford, Ben Youngs; Billy Vunipola, Chris Robshaw, James Haskell; George Kruis, David Attwood; Dan Cole, Dylan Hartley, Joe Marler

Replacements: Tom Youngs, Mako Vuinpola, Kieran Brookes, Nick Easter, Tom Croft, Richard Wigglesworth, Danny Cipriani, Billy Twelvetrees/Jonny May

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