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Michael Cheika changes three as Argentina prepare for England rematch

PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 20: Argentinas players huddle prior to the Rugby World Cup France 2023 semi-final match between Argentina and New Zealand at Stade de France on October 20, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Gaspafotos/MB Media/Getty Images)

Michael Cheika has named his team to face England in the third place play-off at Stade de France in Paris on Friday night.


Following a disappointing 44-6 loss at the hands of New Zealand in last weekend’s semi final, Los Pumas will be looking to bounce back and not only claim the third place position, as they did in 2007, but hope to get some revenge for the 27-10 loss to England in the pool stages.

Pedro Rubiolo replaces Tomas Lavanini in the second-row, Tomás Cubelli comes in for Gonzalo Bertranou at scrum-half and Jeronimo de la Fuente takes over from Santiago Chocobares at inside-centre.

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Argentina have never reached the final but have actually played for third place twice before, once winning in 2007 and then coming up second best to South Africa in 2015.

“It is a very important game,” said Juan Fernandez Lobbe, who played in both of those matches.

“Go out, play a good game, improve what we did this weekend and end with the medal hanging. The same determination in my voice is that of everyone.

“It means going on Friday with total determination, with our way, our weapons. It would be a very good closing of the World Cup.


“It would speak of one more brick in the construction of this team, of a team that learns from its mistakes.

“I am convinced that the team has the focus and determination to have an excellent game and win on Friday. I saw it in their faces, in their expressions, and I could feel it.”

Rugby World Cup
23 - 26
All Stats and Data


1 Thomas Gallo
2 Julian Montoya (c)
3 Francisco Gómez Kodela
4 Guido Petti Pagadizabal
5 Pedro Rubiolo
6 Juan Martin Gonzalez
7 Marcos Kremer
8 Facundo Isa
9 Tomas Cubelli
10 Santiago Carreras
11 Mateo Carreras
12 Jeronimo de la Fuente
13 Lucio Cinti
14 Emiliano Boffelli
15 Juan Cruz Mallia

16 Agustín Creevy
17 Joel Sclavi
18 Eduardo Bello
19 Matias Alemanno
20 Rodrigo Bruni
21 Lautaro Bazan Velez
22 Nicolas Sanchez
23 Matías Moroni


Cheika has named 19 players in the team from the 23 who lost to England in the opening round, while Marcos Kremer and Juan Martin Gonzalez are the only two Los Pumas players to have started every match at RWC 2023. Kremer has actually played the most minutes of any player at RWC 2023 (451).

This will be Julián Montoya’s sixth RWC match as captain – only Agustin Pichot has led Los Pumas in more games at this tournament (8), and captained them to their bronze final victory in 2007.

England named their team earlier today, making eight changes.



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