(MENAFN - Kora) The visitors won 52-11 in Rome on Saturday to complete England's Six Nations campaign with four wins from five matches, but the wide margin of victory was still not enough to overcome the 49-point gap that the Irish held prior to this weekend's final games
With Ireland set to face France in Paris later on Saturday, England now need a draw or a home win by 70 points or less if they are to claim the Six Nations title
An unlikely French win by more than that margin will see Philippe Saint-Andre's men take the championship, while any form of win for Ireland will be enough for them
England made an effort to chase down the points difference in Rome and ran in seven tries, but in the end it was too tough a task and head coach Lancaster was happy to focus on the bigger picture
"We scored some great tries and I'm proud of the boys' efforts," he told BBC Sport
"We weren't quite in our shape in the first half, our execution wasn't right on occasions
"It was tough. I'm proud of the boys, it's a great squad and the bigger picture is important as well
"Things don't always go your way. Italy are a very proud side, and in their home stadium they're not going to give it to you.
Leonardo Sarto's interception try 12 minutes from time effectively ended England's hopes of recording the 50-point victory they required
And captain Chris Robshaw conceded: "We got a little bit loose at times chasing it
"It's a shame we conceded that try, maybe we tried to play a little bit too much
"Now we've just got to sit and wait. We were focused, we were ready and we came here to get 50 points
"We came to get 50 but unfortunately we conceded.