Captain Brian O'Driscoll has called for urgent improvements ahead of his side's trip to Paris after seeing Ireland stutter to a 29-11 victory over Italy in their RBS 6 Nations opener at Croke Park.
First-half tries from Jamie Heaslip and Tomas O’Leary gave the hosts a commanding 23-3 lead over the Azzurri, but a disappointing second half saw the home side add only six more points.
And O’Driscoll, who led Ireland to the Grand Slam last year, admits his side must move up a gear if they’re to defeat France in their own back yard on Saturday.
“I think it was a good workout,” he said. “It's not easy to click immediately having only been together for two weeks and not having played together since November.
“There is plenty to improve on. It's the first one and job done. We'll take the positives out of it and move on.
"Our ability to create fast ruck ball is the winning and losing of games against sides like France. We need to work on that.
“We showed an ability in the first half to turn defence into attack and the amount of line-out ball we won was a big plus.
“We made some good line breaks but didn't finish them off. Maybe we need to improve our support play.”