LONDON (Reuters) - For a country with a proud footballing tradition, Argentina let themselves down badly when they missed five out of six attempts at goal as they lost 21-8 to England at Twickenham on Saturday.
Wing Emiliano Boffelli converted the Pumas’ first penalty to put them level at 3-3 early in the match but two later misses by Juan Martin Hernandez allowed England to open a 14-3 halftime lead after Nathan Hughes’s try.
In the second half there was another miss by Boffelli and two by replacement flyhalf Nicolas Sanchez, including his attempt to convert his late try, which could have made the result tighter after England increased their lead with Semesa Rokoduguni’s try.
“It was a very even match with lots of forward play and few scoring chances for either team, they made the most of theirs and we didn’t when we went for the posts,” coach Daniel Hourcade said.
“There are times when the ball goes in and others not, failing to take so many points you can’t win but we’re not blaming anyone,” added captain Agustin Creevy.
Hourcade said Argentina were uncomfortable with the kind of game England played.
“They decided not to put people in the breakdown leaving 14 players standing which obliged us to play near the maul which is not the game we like most,” he said.
But he added he was pleased with some aspects of Argentina’s game in which he saw an improvement after a Rugby Championship in which they lost all six matches and failed to get bonus points.
“We had a good scrum, were 100 percent in the lineout and good, patient defence when they pressed us,” he said after The Pumas’ fourth defeat to England in 13 months.
Looking ahead to Argentina’s test against Italy in Florence next weekend, Hourcade said it could be a more open match since Italy, 19-10 winners over Fiji in Catania on Saturday, have expanded their game recently.
“That’s the game that suits us best, it could be a nice match,” Hourcade said.
Reporting by Rex Gowar, editing by Pritha Sarkar