Foster wary of Pumas threat

Date published: September 2 2014

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Argentina are a much better all-round side than a year ago according to All Black assistant coach Ian Foster.

Argentina are a much better all-round side than a year ago according to All Black assistant coach Ian Foster.

The Pumas came within a whisker of recording their first Rugby Championship win last time out, cruelly going down 33-31 to South Africa in Salta despite dominating much of the game.

They will have it all to do this weekend though as they travel to Napier to take on New Zealand, who were back to their imperious best against Australia in Auckland.

But despite the fact that Argentina have never beaten the All Blacks, Foster admits his side face a huge test on Saturday, explaining that the Pumas have transformed their game under new boss Daniel Hourcade.

“They're knocking on the door each year and, having looked through the tapes of those two games, they're a dramatically improved side from last year,” he said.

“I don't think even giving South Africa a scare is the right way to describe it. They were in control of that game and just lost it in the last few minutes.

“They've shown they can play and … when they get that right, they will knock someone over.

“They have expanded their repertoire and the pictures we have been seeing is they have a desire to offload more.

“There is a bit more continuity to their game and are quite happy to shift the ball away from the forwards if the situation beckons.

“Instead of just kicking it long and high, they're a bit more thoughtful.

“There weren't too many counter-attack opportunities for South Africa last week so clearly Argentina have done a good job on that.”

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