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‘Doesn’t change anything’: Boffelli’s surprising take on World Cup blockbuster

By Finn Morton
Emiliano Boffelli of Argentina looks dejected during the Rugby World Cup France 2023 match between England and Argentina at Stade Velodrome on September 09, 2023 in Marseille, France. (Photo by Henry Browne - World Rugby/Getty Images)

Along with millions of rugby fans around the world, Argentina fullback Emiliano Boffelli will “probably” watch Sunday night’s Rugby World Cup blockbuster between England and Japan.

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But Boffelli hasn’t made the trip to Nice, and won’t be watching it in a living room or in a fan zone either. This match “doesn’t change anything” for Los Pumas, as Boffelli’s revelation suggested.

The fullback will watch the Test in bed.

Argentina’s World Cup dream hangs in the balance after an opening-round loss to Steve Borthwick’s men in Marseille. Playmaker George Ford kicked the 14-man England outfit to a famous win.

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That result, which was a surprise to many, has left Argentina fending for themselves in World Cup survival mode. One more loss could see them bow out far too early.

Veteran Agustin Creevy recently proclaimed that “each game will be a final” for Los Pumas. Argentina will probably progress if they win their next three games, and the team is focused on exactly that.

“I’ll probably watch in bed it because it is an enjoyable game, but the game doesn’t change anything for us because our focus is on Friday,” Boffelli told reporters.

Fixture
Rugby World Cup
Argentina
19 - 10
Full-time
Samoa
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“The result does not change us. I enjoy watching games.”

With that England defeat now well and truly in the past, Los Pumas have set their sights on their must-win clash against Samoa next Friday.

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Argentina will take on former Wallaby Christian Lealifano and ex-All Black Lima Sopoaga, with both playmakers now suiting up for Samoa. It’s an interesting side that’s more than capable of an upset.

“We reviewed the first game as usual and moved on to the things we need to do. We don’t want to be in the future too much or in the past,” Argentina coach Michael Cheika said.

“The players are clear about where we want to improve, in their preparation. Not much has changed, it is about being more regular in all sectors in preparation for the game.

“We had seen their (Samoa’s) four or five previous games.

“They are training well with a good group of coaches. I know their players, I worked with (Christian) Lealifano in the Wallabies, Ducan Piaa’aua, Lima Sopoaga. I know a lot of players from the southern hemisphere.

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“They are a good team. But we want to play at our best level. It will be a difficult match. We are in a World Cup and we see that almost every game is very competitive.”

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Rachael 302 days ago

I wouldn't be that happy being Los Pumas having Cheika as a coach... Knowing Sthn Hem players doesn't make you a good coach... they'll need more than that... The Manu will be hungry as well..

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William 5 hours ago
All Blacks vs England takeaways: Richie Who? Time for Cortez

Correct analysis of Perofeta’s bungling of the try opportunity Ben. Never ‘fixed’ Steward as he came across in defence and passed too early. Steward didn’t have to break his stride and simply moved on to pressure Telea. Never scanned the easier option of passing to the two supporting players on the inside. Beauden Barrett showed how it is done when he put Telea in for his try. Another point from the game is that the rush defence is hard to maintain as the number of phases increases. From scrums the defensive line only contains backs who all have roughly the same pace. Once forwards are involved, the defence has players with variable speeds often leading to a jagged line. It also tends to lose pace overall giving the attack more time and space. Beauden Barrett’s break to set up Telea’s try came because Baxter went in to tackle McKenzie and Steward went out to cover Telea. Barrett has a massive hole to run through, then commits Steward by passing as late as possible and Telea scores untouched. Another comment I would make is that Ben Earl is a good player and generally an excellent defender but he made three significant misses in the series, two of which led to All Black tries. Got stepped by Perofeta in Dunedin for Savea’s try, missed McKenzie in Auckland leading to what should have been a certain try being set up by Perofeta and was one of the tacklers who couldn’t stop Savea in the leadup to Telea’s first try. Perhaps he should contact Owen Farrell to pick up a few tips from ‘tackle school’.

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