Autumn Nations Series: Eddie Jones confident of fixing England’s problems

Eddie Jones England coach v Argentina ANS 2022 - PA.jpg Credit: Alamy
Eddie Jones England coach v Argentina ANS 2022 - PA.jpg Credit: Alamy

England head coach Eddie Jones believes his team can fix their problems after they started their Autumn Nations Series campaign with a shock 30-29 loss to Argentina at Twickenham on Sunday.

Los Pumas sealed only their second triumph over England at Twickenham, courtesy of Emiliano Boffelli’s match-winning penalty in the 70th minute, and ended a 10-match losing run in the fixture dating back to 2009.

No serious issues for England

The sides are set to meet again in their opening game at the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France but Jones denied that the result shows there is serious issues in England‘s camp ahead of tougher challenges against New Zealand and South Africa in the Autumn Nations Series.

“The World Cup is 11 months away and a lot happens in 11 months. As a lot can happen in a week,” he said.

“I’m not sitting here thinking we’ve got really strong problems within the team. For the most part I thought we dominated the game.

“If we didn’t, then I might be thinking people have good rights to get stuck into us and then we’d have a bit of a fight.

“But I don’t need the fight because I feel like the team went out and played how they wanted to.

“But we made some silly mistakes and we can change those things pretty easily. They’re all controllable. There are no real, big, structural issues within our game.

“You always want to have a more potent attack, always, but sometimes it doesn’t go like that. Sometimes it takes a bit of time to get it right.

“We’ve got to tidy it up a bit but we made enough line breaks to win probably two games, but we didn’t finish them off, which is an area we can always improve on.

“It’s a great opportunity for us now because we’re under the pump a bit which is good and I think we’ll respond really well to that. I’m looking forward to it.”

Successive tries from Boffelli and Santiago Carreras gave Argentina a 24-16 lead with 30 minutes left on the clock and they held on for the win before a dejected Twickenham crowd.

The television match official checked for a handling error in the build up to Carreras’ breakaway try and although he would not criticise referee Andrew Brace, Jones suggested that it should have been disallowed.

“The referee made the decision. When you throw a pass and it goes that far behind, the best players in the world don’t generally do that so there was probably something else that happened,” said Jones in reference to Owen Farrell’s pass that was intended for Billy Vunipola but instead landed on the floor.

Jones revealed that Manu Tuilagi’s departure from the pitch in the 67th minute was due to a blister and reported no further injuries.

Momentous win for Michael Cheika

Meanwhile, Argentina head coach Michael Cheika was happy with a first victory over old foe Jones after losing seven matches to him as the Wallabies’ boss.

“It was good and it was tense. I really liked the way the guys prepared this week. They had a really good attitude about them,” Cheika said.

“It was tricky too because no one in that side had won against England before so you’ve got to combine the mental side of it with the tactical and the technical side of it.

“It’s a great feeling and really nice for the lads to get that opportunity to have that experience here.”

READ MORE: Autumn Nations Series: Brilliant Argentina stun England at Twickenham for historic win

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