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Argentina-England: Ben Youngs' farewell, Santiago Carreras' blunder... The tops and flops of the small final


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Argentina-England: Ben Youngs' farewell, Santiago Carreras' blunder... The tops and flops of the small final


In agony in recent months, the XV de la Rose offered a World Cup campaign beyond its expectations to achieve a fine third place, the first in its history after a global coronation in 2003, three lost finals in 1991, 2007 and 2019 and a fourth place in 1999. First exit from Pool D, with four victories in as many matches against Argentina, Japan, Samoa and Chile, England then defeated Fiji to qualify for the semi-finals and be the only representative from the northern hemisphere at this stage of the competition. After having already beaten the Pumas during the group stage (27-10), despite Tom Curry's early red card, the English did it again during this small final (23-26). If the big flights were not there, the XV de la Rose was pragmatic in its game at the foot of occupation and realistic in its rare highlights, notably with the powerful try from Ben Earl (7th) and that full of opportunism from Théo Dan (44th), who countered a clearance attempt from Santiago Carreras. Imperial in his kicking game (6/6, 16 points), Owen Farrell was responsible for punishing the indiscipline of the Argentines. To conclude in the best possible way the campaign of the Steve Borthwick gang, who arrived less than a year ago to replace Eddie Jones.

The most capped player in English rugby (129 caps), the scrum-half had a dream outing with his selection. Precise in his footwork, Ben Youngs also stood out for his perfect management of the pace of the match until his exit in the 50th minute, replaced by Danny Care. With the end of the careers of Courtnew Lawes, Joe Marler, Dan Coles and Danny Care, an entire page in English rugby has just turned.

Solid in defense as usual, the Argentinian third row, formerly of Stade Français who joined the ranks of ASM Clermont this summer, gained momentum after half an hour of play, like all of his partners . Author of a devastating tackle on Ollie Lawrence (69th) which allowed a scrum to be recovered, the Argentine warrior also obtained two penalties thanks to his activity on the ground. Bloodied at the start of the match after contact with his eyebrow, Marcos Kremer held on and finished the match as the most prominent Argentinian.


By failing three points from a third place in the World Cup, the best result in its history (2007), Argentina can harbor deep regrets after its first thirty minutes completely missed. Beaten in the game at the foot of occupation, imprecise in their game launches and undisciplined in the game on the ground, the Pumas conceded a scathing 13 to 0 in the space of 13 minutes after a try from Ben Earl (7th) and two penalties from Owen Farrell. 13 points which cost dearly on arrival and after an overall dominant second act.

Little in sight in the first half, the Argentinian flyhalf was in all the shots after returning from the locker room. Good and bad. In the 42nd minute, Santiago Carreras had a feast in the English defense where, after eliminating Théo Dan and Ellis Genge, he mystified Marcus Smith with his burst of speed to flatten between the posts. After Emiliano Boffelli's transformation, Argentina took the lead for the first time in the match (17-16). But this happiness will be short-lived since from the dismissal, the Argentine gunner is blocked by Théo Dan on an attempted clearance and sees the English hooker restore the advantage to his team by flattening behind the line. A terrible blow of fate for the one who had just given hope to an entire people. Behind, his performance was also marred by a penalty not found in the English 22 meters (54th), on a highlight from his partners.

XV De La Rose
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