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Los Pumas player ratings vs Spain | Rugby World Cup warm-ups

By Ian Cameron
Argentina's wing Mateo Carreras (R) is challenged by Spain's wing Feta Castiglioni (3R) during the pre-World Cup international friendly rugby union match between Spain and Argentina in Madrid on August 26, 2023. (Photo by Pierre-Philippe MARCOU / AFP) (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images)

Los Pumas player ratings: Argentina put on an impressive display against Spain at the Civitatis Metropolitano in Madrid, leaving their opponents chasing shadows throughout the match played in high temperatures and high pace.


Here’s how we rated Argentina:

1. Joel Sclavi – 8/10
Sclavi anchored the scrum with authority, providing a platform despite brave resistance from a doughty Spanish scrum. His work rate around the park was decent and he found himself on the scoreboard as a result.

2. Agustin Creevy – 7
The veteran’s experience shone through as he led the forward pack with gusto. His lineout throwing was on point, and he was a force to be reckoned with in open play despite his advancing years.

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3. Eduardo Bello – 7.5
Bello’s scrummaging was pretty much flawless, putting the Spanish front row under immense pressure at times. The 120kg Newcastle prop showcased no little athleticism with dynamic ball carries that set the tone for Argentina’s attacking momentum.

4. Guido Petti – 8
Petti’s dominance in the lineout and his physical presence in the tight exchanges were pivotal. He consistently punched holes in the Spanish defence and got over the ball well.

5. Pedro Rubiolo – 7.5
A more than solid outing. Rubiolo’s work rate and commitment were evident as he tirelessly get through a mountain of work. His contributions in rucks and mauls didn’t go unnoticed.

6. Rodrigo Bruni – 8
With Pablo Materia missing, Bruni had to put on a show, and he did. His relentless tackling and breakdown expertise disrupted any chance of the hosts creating anything like a rhythm, allowing Argentina to maintain a vice-like grip on the game.


7. Marcos Kremer – 8.5
A brute among men, he dominated the breakdown and showcased his abilities as a no-nonsense threat with ball in hand. His powerful ball carries and his high-end physicality stood out.

8. Facundo Isa – 8
Isa impressed, as he consistently made ground with his ball carries. The 29-year-old’s link-up play with the halfbacks was crucial in maintaining Argentina’s attacking shape and he claimed a try off the back of a rolling maul that the Spaniards couldn’t repel.

9. Tomas Cubelli – 8
Cubelli’s snappy service and decision-making at the base of the ruck kept the Spanish defenders guessing. His ability to dictate the tempo of the game was key to Argentina’s fluid attacking movements and his score just before halftime was fully merited.

10. Nicolas Sanchez – 8
A near-flawless kicking performance from Sanchez, who controlled the game superbly, admittedly off an armchair ride from a super-dominant forward pack.


11. Mateo Carreras – 8.5
An awesome display in the Spanish capital. Carreras showcased his electric pace and agility, consistently beating defenders at will. Scored his latest international try in the 29th minute.

12. Santiago Chocobares – 7.5
Chocobares’ distribution and line-breaking ability added significant flair to Argentina’s backline. His partnership with Moroni outside him created opportunities that Spain struggled to contain in the first half.

13. Matias Moroni – 7.5
Moroni’s defensive work was top-notch, shutting down any attempts from Spain to break through the midfield. Another Newcastle player, the centre may not have had the toughest day at the office but was pretty ruthless nonetheless.

14. Rodrigo Isgro – 6
Isgro’s positioning and support play were noteworthy, allowing him to capitalize on the team’s attacking movements, even if he didn’t find his way onto the scoresheet here.

15. Juan Cruz Mallia – 8
Another try scorer, Mallia’s counter-attacking prowess was on show as he exploited gaps in the Spanish defence. His solid positioning at the back ensured a reliable last line of defence, although he was rarely tested here.

The substitutes injected fresh energy into the game and maintained the high standard set by the starting line-up. Jeronimo de la Fuente and Santiago Grondona stood out, although Grondona left the field limping badly. Martin Bogado was also on fire.


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