Jones focuses on effort, rather than value, after England beat Argentina

13 November 2017 03:24

Eddie Jones offered a robust defence of his players after being asked whether England's ugly victory over Argentina offered fans value for money.

The Pumas were defeated 21-8 in a start to the autumn schedule at Twickenham described as a "grindathon" by Jones, whose anger was evident during the match.

At one point in the second half a television camera in front of the coach's box showed the Australian slam down his notebook and mouth "f***, how f****** stupid are we?"

Tickets for the match available for public sale ranged in price from £40 to £110 and when asked how he would have felt had he paid the higher amount to watch the game, Jones hit back.

"We gave 100 per cent effort. I don't understand the question," Jones said.

"You'd have to answer that (if it was value for money), not me. I am not a columnist, I am not a businessman. All I do is coach a rugby team.

"I try to get them to play as hard as we can. We played hard. We might not have played well, but we played hard. I am disappointed in the question.

"I thought most of the guys did pretty well, we just didn't play well as a team. I am disappointed if you thought we didn't try hard, really disappointed. Because we tried hard.

"You've just got to look at the players when they came off. They gave everything. Sometimes it just doesn't click.

"It was a game where things aren't going right, you can't get your rhythm, you can't get the speed of ball you want. The game is difficult and you find a way to win."

It was the 20th win of Jones' 21-Test reign, but a far tougher test looms on Saturday against an Australia team emboldened by their 29-21 victory over Wales in Cardiff.

Jonny May is likely to be available as he nears recover from a hamstring strain and Jones must also decide whether to recall Owen Farrell and Maro Itoje to after they were rested for Argentina.

"We are trying to win the World Cup in 2019 so everything we do now is about that," Jones said.

"We are managing the players for them to be at their best by November 2, 2019. Some players need to work on other things.

"At this stage that's the case with Maro and Owen and we'll continue doing that until we think they need to play."

Jones is expecting an emphatic response against Australia, who finished second in the Rugby Championship this year.

"I don't really care what Australia thought of us against Argentina. I want Australia to bring their best game to Twickenham and then see if we can handle it," Jones said.

"We wanted to play well but the players know they have a big game next week and they're going to be up for it. We know we have to play better and we will."

Source: PA