Next weekend’s all-Celtic clash at Murrayfield was much anticipated. I say was.

It’s still a massive match for Scotland, who are still in the Grand Slam mix.

For Ireland, however, all of their hopes of matching last season’s perfect record with back-to-back Grand Slams and Triple Crowns lay in tatters in Dublin after losing to England at Aviva Stadium.

That won’t mean they will be any less committed, and less focused, or less determined against Scotland. There is still a championship to be played out.

But the fact of the matter is that, from an Irish perspective, some of the gilding has been taken off this fixture after yesterday’s defeat, according to one-time Irish hooker Shane Byrne.

“It was very much in Ireland’s hands, from the off; a home game against the side generally thought of as your biggest challengers and rivals, at home, first up.

"That’s the one we wanted to win – had to win. Bit of history riding on this game in terms of ambitions for titles, Grand Slams and Triple Crowns.

“But, instead, we are coming to Scotland, still trying to win, but without the big prizes on offer. And that will be disappointing,” said the 41-times-capped former hooker, still upset at the manner of yesterday’s loss.

“Beforehand, it was funny the English accused us of being boring because we said we’d be happy to win 6-0 or 9-3. But the scoreline wasn’t that important. Winning was.”

Winning in Edinburgh is something Ireland are not unfamiliar with during the Six Nations years. But against a Scotland team brimming with confidence, given their home form in the tournament in recent times, Ireland will find it tough going.

“Scotland throw up their own challenges. You never have an easy game at Murrayfield,” admitted Shane, despite a flawless record as a player, with five wins from five outings against the Scots.

“But now Scotland are a dangerous team, very attack-minded under their coach [Gregor Townsend] and they can score points so quickly and have done so against good teams.

“They’ve beaten fancied Irish teams on a few occasions in recent times so nothing will be taken for granted.

“It’s always a trip I’ve enjoyed making, but this time I’m working on the Italy-Wales game.”

While he will be missing Murrayfield, Byrne’s Scottish connections were very much to the fore on Friday evening at the Dublin Show Ground, playing for the Irish Legends against their English counterparts in a charity match, with the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation one of the recipients.