Freddie Steward said England defense coach Kevin Sinfield joined the team following the defeat to Fiji in late August, with that outburst inspiring Steve Borthwick’s men to victory over Argentina in their World Cup opener; England won 27-10 despite an early red card for Tom Curry
Last updated: 11/09/23 11:17 PM
Freddie Steward says England’s heroic win over Argentina in their World Cup opener was inspired by a verbal “missile” from defense coach Kevin Sinfield after the recent defeat to Fiji.
Steve Borthwick’s men suffered their first ever loss to Fiji in late August, losing 30-22 in what was their worst spell, but bounced back two weeks later to beat Argentina 27-10 despite playing almost the entire match with 14 men. After Tom Curry’s early red card.
Curry faces a disciplinary hearing in Paris on Tuesday, where the player is expected to find out the length of his ban for the challenge that led to a head-on collision with Pumas full-back Juan Cruz Malia.
“We got a rocket after that,” linebacker Steward said [Fiji] Game.
Tom Curry will attend a disciplinary hearing on Tuesday after receiving a red card in England’s opening World Cup match against Argentina.
“Seinfeld is a man you don’t want to let down.”
“There were no complaints about it, it had to happen. We had a very comprehensive review, which is what we needed, and we reaped the benefits against Argentina. It had to happen.”
“That’s what makes Kev a good defensive coach – he’s very inspiring. He motivates us a lot and he’s the type of guy you don’t want to let down. That’s a testament to him as a man. When you go there, part of him is that you’re doing it for him.”
“You don’t want to see a guy like that, who puts his heart and soul into us in his work through his defense, get discouraged.
“How he cares so much about covering each other’s backs. That’s the most important thing to him. He wants a defensive unit that is going to work incredibly hard for each other, and when things get tough, they cover each other.”
“Sure, you can be as good a defender as you want as a full-back, but there will be times when things don’t go as planned, and that’s where you’re tested. That’s his main ethos.”
Seinfeld: The fans loved our fight and our spirit
Sinfield says England must rely on a determined display ahead of their second World Cup match against Japan in Nice on Sunday.
“It’s just the beginning. We’ve seen a lot of what we saw in training against Argentina, which is fun, but I still feel like there’s a lot in this team – a lot of improvement and a lot of growth,” Sinfeld said.
“To get the win, given the hype that was around us and the way the group circled the wagons – figuratively – is really fun.
“We saw a fight, a spirit and an attitude that the people supporting us at home and on the field would love to see, and for us as coaches, that’s especially gratifying, (but) we know we need to be better.”
He added, “Part of the challenge facing us as coaches and part of the challenge facing the group is to ensure that this is not an anomaly, but rather the beginning.”