Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has torn into the national team after a string of losses that now stretches back to November 2016 after a wretched showing in the Pacific Nations Cup – reports the Samoa Observer.
Tuilaepa – who is also the chairman of the Samoan Rugby Union – launched his scathing appraisal of the team in the wake of a poor performance in this year’s competition which featured Fiji, Tongan and Georgia for the first time.
Addressing the parliament he said: “You have no guts.”
“I told them to look at Tonga, their population is nowhere near 200,000 and yet they are playing cricket with you guys.”
“This shows you have no guts. You played ten games and you lost in all of those ten games, so what does that tell me, ‘you have no guts.’
“That is what I said to them on Wednesday night.”
“I said, if you don’t win this game then you all have to resign from the team,” he said. “I told them that it would be better to let the kids playing in the Super 9 to represent the Manu Samoa if they can’t handle it.”
Tuilaepa also suggested to the team that they dropping the ball because “you are afraid.”
The PM however says Samoa’s crucial Rugby World Cup qualifying game against Germany is the perfect opportunity to bounce back.
Samoa will play Germany in Apia on 30 June and and in Germany on 14 July with the winner of those fixtures on aggregate qualifying into Pool A alongside Ireland, Scotland, hosts Japan and Russia at Rugby World Cup 2019.
The runner-up will progress to the repechage tournament in November.
“Everything happens for a reason, and with this game with Germany the Manu Samoa will come back strong in this game. The reason being is because we have reached the very bottom and there is nowhere else for us to go except coming back up.”
The PM then went on to throw serious shade at Germany’s competency in the game.
“They will be playing against the team that has no knowledge whatsoever on how to play rugby, so we must win this game.
“And the other good thing about this is that when we win against Germany and make it through the World Cup, we will be in a good pool. So I would be very shocked if we don’t make it to the Quarter final.”
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