[QODLink]
Rugby Union

'England team are in a great place'

Assistant coach Andy Farrell was impressed with England's display against Springboks and is ready to face All Blacks.
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2012 16:52
Assistant coach Andy Farrell is not concerned about England's two recent losses [GALLO/GETTY]

England assistant coach Andy Farrell has insisted the side are in a "great place" as they prepare to face world champions New Zealand on the back of defeats by Australia and South Africa.

Saturday's 16-15 loss to the Springboks followed the previous week's 20-14 reverse against the Wallabies and left England still looking for a first win against one of the old Tri-Nations under coach Stuart Lancaster.

The omens for England as they return to Twickenham to complete their European autumn campaign are not encouraging.

New Zealand, following their 33-10 win over Wales in Cardiff last weekend, are on a 20-match unbeaten run and the All Blacks have won their last nine Tests against England.

"They are in a great place. They have played against two very good teams and the reality of the South Africa game was that we were the best team"

Andy Farrell

Yet Farrell was adamant on Tuesday that England were the better team against the Springboks, having certainly more than matched South Africa up front.

"I have said absolutely nothing (to lift the players)," Farrell said.

"They are in a great place. They have played against two very good teams and the reality of the South Africa game was that we were the best team.

"You can't not be in a good place when you review the game in its entirety.

"There were a couple of places we would like to improve but in the (wet) conditions and in the circumstances we were taking the game to a side who were in good form and had won games recently at a canter.

"We were piling on the pressure and making inroads. Of course there were errors because of the conditions but they made errors too. We were pushing right to the end."

Former dual code international Farrell said: "You play like that against the second best team in the world and you almost win. Sometimes you win these tight games, sometimes you lose them.

"If we produce the same intensity and the same intent you would like to think you will be in any type of Test match."

379

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
Your chance to be an investigative journalist in Al Jazeera’s new interactive game.
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.

Featured
Private citizens take initiative to help 'irregular' migrants, accusing governments of excessive focus on security.
Indonesia's cassava plantations are being killed by mealybugs, and thousands of wasps will be released to stop them.
Violence in Ain al-Arab has prompted many Kurdish Syrians to flee to Turkey, but others are returning to battle ISIL.
Unelected representatives quietly iron out logistics of massive TPP and TTIP deals among US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.
Led by students concerned for their future with 'nothing to lose', it remains to be seen who will blink first.