Italian winger Paolo Odogwu said on Tuesday that he knew “what to expect” against the French who they know well and who they will face on Friday for the last day of the group stage of the Rugby World Cup.
“We are a little more familiar with their style so I think it is easier for us to prepare for this kind of match,” said the 26-year-old winger at a press conference, four days after the rout inflicted by New Zealand last Friday (96-17).
The Italian players can still believe in qualifying for the quarter-finals in the event of a victory against the Blues whom they know very well on Friday in Lyon (9:00 p.m.). “We know what to expect, we know how they are going to play and we know how we are going to try to thwart their plans,” explained the Treviso winger.
“Our state of mind is to arrive without fear to play, whether in attack or defense,” added Odogwu.
Andrea Moretti, the Italian scrum coach, refuses to paint too gloomy a picture after the punishment received against the New Zealanders: “We have to know how to accept that we had a bad match. In the quarter-final in 2015, the French lost 62-13 against the All Blacks, and it was France,” he stressed. The Italians have not beaten the French XV since 2013, one of their three successes in 47 meetings against their neighbors.