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Mark Orlovac

Scotland ponder what might have been (84)

Paris – The reaction of the Scotland players as the final whistle went at the Stade de France on Sunday night said it all.

Some sank to their knees, others looked blankly into space, Sean Lamont angrily threw his gumshield to the ground.

As the Argentina players and fans started their delirious celebrations, Scotland were left with the feeling that they had just blown their best of chance of reaching the last four of a World Cup since 1991.

Before the match, the kilted hordes had gathered outside the ground in hope more than expectation, fearing that a strong Argentina side, conquerors of both hosts France and Ireland in the group stages, would walk away with it.

Scotland on the other hand had been a cagey lot in the pool. A second-string team had been thumped by New Zealand and the radar boot of Chris Paterson had kicked them to victory over Italy in the rain of St Etienne.

Sean Lamont contemplates what might have been

It was always going to be hard for the contest to match the fireworks of super Saturday and the first half is not one that will live long in the memory.

With so much at stake I suppose both sides could be forgiven for concentrating on playing for territory and Argentina, with their “15 back-row players” as Frank Hadden said during the week, strangled the life out of Scotland’s game.

Scotland were only seven points down at the break but after Argentina had increased the lead with a penalty and a drop goal, they had no real choice but to try and give it a lash.

“We could see they were desperately looking for the final whistle with 20 minutes to go and we spread the word that we were going to have to go for it,” said wing Chris Paterson.

And so they did. Hadden brought on four substitutes on 57 minutes and suddenly his side showed what they were capable of. Chris Cusiter went over to put his side back in the game and Scotland sensed that despite an error-strewn display, the game could be theirs.

With the clock ticking down, Scotland threatened near the corner but fly-half Dan Parks opted for a chip over the top rather than keeping it in hand. The ball sailed over intended target Sean Lamont into touch and that was that.

The Scotland fans let out a collective groan – they knew the game was up.

Afterwards the inquest began and it was hard not to come away with the feeling that Scotland would have had more success if they had showed their hand a little earlier.

Scotland were dejected after their loss to Argentina

Paterson though, disagreed. "“There are two reasons that we didn’t open up. Argentina are really good at stopping you play and every team in the first half of a quarter-final wants to keep the opposition as far away from your line as possible.

"I have played in World Cup quarter-finals before and come away feeling really buoyed with how we finished. But against Argentina I genuinely thought we would score at the end. It’s bitterly disappointing not to get over the line.

“I don't like things ending and we are now going home. It is going to be a wrench to watch the semi-finals on telly next weekend.”

But is it all so bad for Frank Hadden's men?

It may not have been the most entertaining of campaigns but the proud record of reaching at least every World Cup quarter-final has been maintained. The achievement is given more weight considering all the strife that has affected the domestic game over recent times.

As Scotland’s players return home on Monday, they will obviously be kicking themselves for missing out on such a glorious opportunity, but there is also a real sense that this young squad can start to make an impact.

Only two of Sunday’s match-day 22 are over 30 with the vast majority likely to feature in New Zealand in four years time.

So let's try and look on the bright side, Monday is depressing as it is, and as Paterson says; "You learn from these experiences. We have the Six Nations coming up and we will try and get a smile back on our faces by doing well in that. We can only get better."

For Scotland's sake, let's hope so.

Mark Orlovac is a BBC Sport journalist based in London. He will be based in Paris for the knockout stages of the Rugby World Cup.


Comments  Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 01:49 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Anonymous wrote:

"Before the match, the kilted hordes had gathered outside the ground in hope more than expectation, fearing that a strong Argentina side, conquerors of both hosts France and Ireland in the group stages, would walk away with it."

- I doubt very much there was a single member of the "kilted hordes" who though Argentina would walk away with it. Yes, we are a fatalist bunch us Scots, but this was an evenly matched game and anyone with half a rugby brain could have seen that.

What most actually feared (through painful experience) was that Scotland would chuck it away with silly errors at the breakdown, give-away tries and failing to have a real go.

Which (surprise, surprise) is exactly what happened... Sure Argentina played okay, but they never looked like a team that could create much, and personally I am gutted that Scotland threw away their best chance of getting to the semi-finals since '91 by not being brave enough from the kick-off.

  • 2.
  • At 02:31 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Wise old owl wrote:

To watch this display was frustrating enough but what is more frustrating is that what a chance wasted! For the first time in this tournament Argentina looked beatable, Aussies out, All Blacks out, South Africa unconvincing. England and France looking better but I would suggest mentally Scotland would have preferred to play one of them. We will never have a better chance! I think it is a running theme throughout this tournament, the teams using rotation/resting mentality have been poor, the teams sticking to there tried and tested have been player better.

  • 3.
  • At 02:36 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Julian wrote:

Personally I think Scotland played very well. There were a number of individual errors that could have turned the game and maybe this cost them (Dan Park's kick to the corner and charged down kick as well as Lamont's failed recovery after the charge down are probably the ones that stand out for me).
But overall I thought they and the rest of the squad had a good game. They were unfortunately punished heavily for those mistakes. To say they left it too late is a little harsh in my opinion. At least they showed a lot of character and passion. They were unfortunate in the end, but from a neutral (as neutral as an Englishman can get) perspective it was great to watch a tense Quarter Final.
I think the Scots will be looking forward to the next Six Nations with perhaps a little more expectation this time around.

  • 4.
  • At 02:39 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Ollie wrote:

A fine performance from the Scots, although not quite fine enough.

Lesson learned: Play Cusiter from the start!

  • 5.
  • At 03:01 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Will wrote:

I have posted similar to this on another blog so if you've read it before then I apologise.
A lot of unrealistic nonsense has been spouted: This was not an encouraging world cup for Scotland. They have been awful. They got to the quarter finals because of a terribly unconvincing (and lucky?) performance against Italy. Thay were certainly no better than either Wales or Ireland and while both those countries are up in arms and demanding wholesale changes to their whole rugby setups the scots are congratulating themselves on reaching a QF! In the cold light of day it is begining to feel that it would have been better for scottish rugby in the long term if Italy had won that group match.
Don't get me wrong, Scotland did reach the QF and we would all have settled for that at the begining of the RWC, but the performances have not been good.

  • 6.
  • At 03:04 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • 4-year-old wrote:

Our problem will always be our mentality. What frustrates me most is reading what Hadden has to say about our defeat, the aim of any tournament is to win it, not to reach the QFs; but it seems our coach (who I actully think is a pretty good coach), and many fans too, are quite happy where they are! Do you think England or France would have been happy with that result? No, they wouldn't, that's why they're in the semis and we are not. Paterson and the other players' disappointment is a good sign, perhpas they'll remember how they felt yesterday evening after losing one incredible oportuninty to do something special the next time they get a chance.

  • 7.
  • At 03:10 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • martin connor wrote:

Why didnt the Scots play the more expansive game that brought some reward in the last quarter of the game as opposed to the kicking/territory game they employed with little or no success for the majority of the tie, not to mention playing right into Argentinas hands by keeping it tight and playing with no real urgency? When it was obvious that plan A was bearing little fruition, why did they take so long to resort to plan B, which was in place and did have almost immediate effect? Too little, too late. A sad lack of self belief seems to be running throughout the coaches and players. Like the old school reports used to say, "could do better."

  • 8.
  • At 03:10 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Pavlovs Cat wrote:

I am continually amazed at the fact that we seem unable to produce 30 players that can run, pass, kick and tackle correctly. What is getting taught north of the border these days? I'm sure I still have an amateur ethos of how rugby should be played, but come on - catch the blooming thing !!!

This was a glorious opportunity spurned and one that hurts almost as much - not quite though - as the 1991 semi-final exit.

Hats off to Club Argentina and best of luck against the 'Boks. At least you've saved us that shoeing in that one.

And please God, someone beat England. I can't cope with another 4 years of them as World Champions.

  • 9.
  • At 03:26 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Anonymous wrote:

GUTTED! Scotland should have won this won, argentina were poor. Basiic errors like kicking in to touch on the full (twice) and poorly fielding clearances and penalties (3 or 4 times) not to mention, what was lamont doing when contepomi scored?!? Based on that performance South Africa are in the final already, a missed job by scotland, who showed much more attacking ability than Argentina.

  • 10.
  • At 03:45 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Nick wrote:

If the Scots can match the baulk and strength they now have with their older style fast game then I think Scotland would/could be a world class side. Just a little ponderous at the moment and that, unfortunately, played into the Argentine hands. I think the 6 nations this year will be absolutely great with England begining to get some cohesion and momentum, Wales always a great running side, Ireland will surely lift themselves from the depths they have decended to, France possibly World Champs and Italy improving all the time. The 6N could be the best ever. Bad luck Scotland but at least you're on the up!

  • 11.
  • At 04:17 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Catherine wrote:

Can somebody shed some light on how Kenny Logan managed to participate in Strictly Come Dancing an hour before the Scotland - Argentina game when said show was supposedly live????

I was sorry to see Scotland knocked out of the QF but, Argentina were the better side and frankly, they wanted the win more. I hope Scotland up the ante for the next world cup - it would be quite fantastic to see them in a semi (if not a final).

  • 12.
  • At 04:22 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Alex wrote:

I agree entirely with Will's comments. When you start settling for mediocrity, that's what to expect as a result. So while the SRU congratulate themselves on avoiding a major embarrassment and look forward to more of the same, the realistic underperforming nations are cleaning house and asking themselves the difficult questions about how to perform better in future.

  • 13.
  • At 04:26 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Eddy Pacino wrote:

we lost by less than a converted try. in international rugby there are very small margins. argentina got the bounce of the ball for their opening score from a charge down, scotland didn't.

on another day parks' kick may have landed 50cms inside the touch line allowing lamont to field it and score. with a bit of luck from there mossy could have put us in the semis.

i think we might look at a slightly better balance in the back 3 and pick someone with sheer pace. it's fine to have 2 big lumps in the lamont brothers but in terms of sheer pace neither of them are super-quick. thom evans @ glasgow might be a candidate.

  • 14.
  • At 05:14 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • iain mackenzie wrote:

scotland should not be kicking there selfs, because they didnt deserve to go thru! the scotland pack were very good, but the backs were pathetic! they need to stop kicking the ball every time they get it and grow some balls! when the attacked with ball in hand they looked dangerous! could frank hadden and the backs not see this??? its hurtfull to support such a feeble rugby side when i know the can do much better!!! lads keep the ball in hand and back your strength and pace!!!! and grow some balls!!

  • 15.
  • At 05:44 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Rob wrote:

Fully agree with Alex's comment (#11) about accepting mediocrity. Yes, Scotland moved the ball around at the end but by that time Argentina were really tired. Would not have had the same impact earlier on I think. Also, the main thing to remember is that Scotland's backline are/have been poor in attacking and making breaks which other teams seem to be able to do! Going forward, this is definitely an area of concern that needs addressed! This RL type of lying flat does not cut it - need to adrees this in coaching; apart from Alan Tait, is their a Backs Coach? AT may be great at defence etc. but need a talented Back Coach to teach the rudiments of Backs play.

In truth i thought sctoland played as well as they had all tournament. They had limited possesion and did what they could with it, which in fairness isn't much. They haven't done much in the backs for several seasons and i saw no great evidence they could suddenly develop a cutting edge for this game.Thier pack was always going to come off second best and when you play Dan Parks you have to expect a charge down and his erros to cost you points. Once again they did.
Argentina were poor, they made more errors and squandered more chnaces than in any other performance of this RWC, but i never really felt that Scotland had the fire power to win the game. Argentina played like team thinking of a Semi final, it could have cost them greatly against other teams.

  • 17.
  • At 05:45 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • bob wrote:

You would have thought Dan Parks would have learned by now to put some height to his kicks. How many tries has he given away in international rugby through charge downs? Three?

  • 18.
  • At 05:53 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • paulcedron wrote:

Scotland was a lot better than everybody expected (bar Argentinians). They could win the match, and they were a lot tougher for us than France.
Being a young team, they will do it great in the future.
Now we have to face SA, and i think we can make it.

  • 19.
  • At 06:12 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Santiago wrote:

jejej...... we re the best.....bye bye....see you in the 7 nations......

  • 20.
  • At 06:15 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Rob wrote:

Fully agree with Alex's comment (#11) about accepting mediocrity. Yes, Scotland moved the ball around at the end but by that time Argentina were really tired. Would not have had the same impact earlier on I think when they were fresher. Also, the main thing to remember is that Scotland's backline are/have been poor in attacking and making breaks and penetration which other teams seem to be able to do! Going forward, this is definitely an area of concern that needs addressed! This RL type of lying flat does not cut it - need to adrees this in coaching; apart from Alan Tait (AT), is their an attacking Backs Coach? AT may be great at defence etc. but need a talented attacking Back Coach to teach the rudiments of Backs play. Finally, going forward, will young Barcley get his chance to perform as a true No 7 instead of a No 8 in that position as we have been playing with. Feel that it is time to bring Hogg back to No 8 position and build for the next WC

  • 21.
  • At 06:27 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Hugh Bennet wrote:

Well they got what they deserved, it is an 80 minute game and Scotland only started to play at 50 leaving 30 minutes to win the game.

I am a big supporter and follower.

  • 22.
  • At 06:53 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Huge wrote:

Could have wept while watching this. I don't know much about this game, but I do know that if you can't pass the ball your not going to win. Too many passes were behind the receiver, or above his head - leading to a total loss of momentum. Good scrums were thrown away with terrible turnovers. The coach said we would play with some flair. If that's us playing with flair I dread watching a game where we play it tight.

  • 23.
  • At 07:10 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Sebastian wrote:

Act 1: Loffreda >>> EOS
Act 2: Loffreda >>> Hadden

And to those that complain about negative tactics and defensive game, let me tell ya.

Argentina didn't need to play well to control the match for 60 minutes. As for whether they wanted to play positive rugby, we should probably ask the same to the Scots when they gave us that ugly slugfest against Italy. Back then, Scotland had an objective and they did whatever they could to reach it (including playing the most boring and lacklustre match so far). Argentina had an objective and they stuck to their plan.

We don't need sore losers nor hypocresy. You would have been ectstatic had Patterson kicked Scotland into the semis. And the Pumas fans wouldn't be whining about negative tactics. Even when the Pumas played their worst game in the RWC, they still controlled the match and have only themselves to blame for allowing Scotland back into the game (mainly due to nerves, tiredness and lack of discipline).

The Pumas can go all the way. They just need to believe they can do it. Vamos Argentina!!!

  • 24.
  • At 07:22 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Sammy wrote:

Why did Scotland kick? If they had kept going with the ruck and maul they would have surely scored the winning try. The kick always go wrong, especially for Scotland, who, in my view, aren't that good at kicking in play.

  • 25.
  • At 07:43 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Gordi McColm wrote:

To all the french supporters scotland apologises for not only letting themselves down but you too. 'Horde', hardly the blue clad supports were only in light blue. Wats happened to the tartan army or have they all jumped on the football bandwagon?

The game itself, well, we'd lost the game at half time. Over the last few games we've rarely looked like scoring tries and thats cost us dear. Matched with sloppy errors and downright stupid tactics it's a wonder we even got there. Pull your socks up scotland!

  • 26.
  • At 07:47 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Doon Souther wrote:

Lets stop kidding ourselves guys - the Argies had us shoved back into our own half and simply couldn't get out until they tired in the last 15 to 20 minutes.

OK it would have been great if we could have stolen it at the death and yes maybe we did get a bit desperate, but lets be honest our back row didn't fire and our backs are OK but even the All Blacks can't score from their own half when under real pressure (as we all saw on Saturday) so it was always an uphill battle for Scotland.

We did OK and maybe we were nervous against Italy but Kaplan is just apalling as a referee and we just didn't want to risk another fiasco like in the 6 Nations...get over it guys!

This is a young team built largely around underperforming Glasgow and Edinburgh teams. The Argies have been together a long time and their play is built on Premiership and French experience.

Shake your heads, shrug, smile and move on...believe it or not the future really isn't all that bad!

  • 27.
  • At 07:57 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Neil Robertson wrote:

This was a hugely frustrating game to watch. You could see that Argentina were there for the taking and, what did Scotland do?, we gave away a stupid try and kicked a ridiculous effort into the corner when the forwards were almost certain to score eventually. What was Parks thinking of? The next day's headlines, I think. Until we produce players who are composed under real pressure we aren't going to win these games. Very, very frustrating.

  • 28.
  • At 08:08 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • John G Ponting wrote:

What a pity that Scotland did not win it would have been so good to see an England v Scotland final. It would have been the only way that England could win and still live with the Scots.

  • 29.
  • At 08:37 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • ian hylands wrote:

I agree with the (school teacher)comment that if you cannot pass to your own player and he cannot catch it - what chance have you got. Undoubtedly the pumas were stronger in contact situations and even more street-wise at the breakdown. They got tired and we could have taken them.
My point is that we didn't win any restarts - theirs or ours. How many times we had the chance to capture ball and didn't.Boom! we're in our own half again.
Our back-play is infant, big and clumsy. We have to trust the 4wards to take it up and rely on sniping # 9's. I've seen nothing creative in the backs for years - gap exposing at pace. We've come up short - Mr Hadden's 'young ones' need to be released. How are you goin to do that then ?? good luck the pumas - they'll need it.


  • 30.
  • At 09:25 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Cammie wrote:

First of all GUTTED !!!! I am a fan of Dan parks , ut I have to say his decision to cross kick to Lamont was a poor one and badly executed . Good luck in 6 Nations . Should be a cracker !

  • 31.
  • At 09:46 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Ron wrote:

Lets face it,Scotland had as much chance of beating the Argies as I do playing for England.
You just weren't good enough.
Better luck next time.

  • 32.
  • At 10:04 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Alex Schuster wrote:

The problem was that Scotland evinced no attacking intent or talent for virtually the first sixty minutes of the game. By the time they decided to play real rugby, the clock was ticking relentlessly onwards.

Quite apart from the misjudged kick over in the direction of Lamont in the closing minute or so, there was also the missed catch from their own throw-in when Scotland were virtually five metres from the line with five minutes still to play. That was an immense mistake which cost Scotland an important attacking platform. All in all, Scotland realised too late that they possessed the ability to defeat Argentina.

  • 33.
  • At 10:05 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Alex Schuster wrote:

The problem was that Scotland evinced no attacking intent or talent for virtually the first sixty minutes of the game. By the time they decided to play real rugby, the clock was ticking relentlessly onwards.

Quite apart from the misjudged kick over in the direction of Lamont in the closing minute or so, there was also the missed catch from their own throw-in when Scotland were virtually five metres from the line with five minutes still to play. That was an immense mistake which cost Scotland an important attacking platform. All in all, Scotland realised too late that they possessed the ability to defeat Argentina.

  • 34.
  • At 10:39 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Bruce wrote:

The choice for young teams like Scotland, is do they want to play each game to win, or to develop the team for later competitions.

If the latter, a coach needs a 4 year contract. If the former, they are judged by results each year.

The question as to developing the team, is identifying what sort of game the young players can best play. They might not have the same attributes as the Fijians (yet it was the forward work improvement which laid the platform as well as the improving the focus on direct running and support to it) ... . But even if Scotland's strength is the loose forwards, some complementary development of the backline (and scrum) is still required.

  • 35.
  • At 10:39 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Peter wrote:

What might have been yes – did we deserve it no, bottom line not good enough

24 hours on and still just the same feeling of disappointment. It wasn’t the defeat that hurt simply the manner of it. To defend as we did, to battle for possession and territory only to lose it through basic errors was what was most disappointing.

To be 19/6 down to the Pumas who did not have create one meaningful attack themselves is bad

However the fact we are talking about ‘what ifs’ and missing out on a semi final spot shows to some extent how far we have come since 2005. It is hard to comprehend the team during the Matt Williams era even getting this far. . It is after all just over 2 years since we were 40 odd points down at half time to Wales on what was one of our blackest days ever.

Frank Hadden has to his credit turned Scotland around, this squad is now established with competition for places. Hadden needs to build on the foundations he has put in place, develop an attacking game plan that works and also show that he can make the big calls and drop players – reputation alone should not be the reason a player is picked it should be on how they are playing now and what they will bring to the team now. Use the squad, don’t allow another MDR scenario develop with positions i.e. Sean Lamont – challenge him to deliver in the matches

If need be bring in specialist help because it aint working at present and wont until he starts to drops the conservative game plan approach. The backs are fast, they can beat men but not when they are taking the ball 5 metres away from the gain line with the opposition lining up the tackles or catching a ball thrown above the head or below the knee or behind losing any speed in the move

The real test starts here for Hadden and Scotland, build on the past two years and look first to the Six Nations. Develop a winning side here over the next two years then start planning about World Cup semis and more in 2011

  • 36.
  • At 11:17 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • tim c wrote:

Conservative selection crap execution .As dynamic as england in game against SA.Did not play .
Feel sorry for a class back row who were never allowed to do what scotland are good at scavenge and break the game up .WHAT posseded the coaching staff to miss the chance .At least make the most of patterson and cussiter not leave it till the last 10 minutes .

  • 37.
  • At 11:40 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • p****d off wrote:

Will #5, I could kiss you for writing that! Finally someone with some sense!
Agree 100%! Not that that counts for much!
Hadden smadden- he started well enough as coach, then ran out of ideas and now looks like he is begining to do a 'Matt Williams' on us,over-coaching the players so they end up unable to use their own heids on the pitch to play to what is in front of them there and then, not what was up on the coaches board earlier!!

  • 38.
  • At 11:51 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • p****d off wrote:

Will #5, I could kiss you for writing that! Finally someone with some sense!
Agree 100%! Not that that counts for much!
Hadden smadden- he started well enough as coach, then ran out of ideas and now looks like he is begining to do a 'Matt Williams' on us,over-coaching the players so they end up unable to use their own heids on the pitch to play to what is in front of them there and then, not what was up on the coaches board earlier!!

  • 39.
  • At 11:55 PM on 08 Oct 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

In the first place, it seems easy to fall on team once the game is over. If Park´s last atempt kick would of been inches shorter, everyone would now be boasting out what a great scottish team they have, convinced that the match against the Bocks is winnable.
Congratulations to the Scottish Players who managed to show they have guts and a winning spirit in the last 20 minutes of the game.

Secondly, I´m amazed how poor results get the press and the public opinion, out of logical objetiviness.

It seems that LOS PUMAS have just gone through to join the four best teams in the cup because they are so mean and naughty that they don´t leave the "TRADITIONAL" teams play they´re own game and beat them.

We (argentinians) should not be invited again to a World Cup. Apparently it gets everyone upset.

Just imagine how we feel regarding our team and what the press say:

LOS PUMAS - FRANCE: all the press except the French were just enjoying France´s loss. Anyway, no French press admited they lost. They just complained it wasn´t fair because LOS PUMAS didn´t allow them to play their game!!!!!!

LOS PUMAS - GEORGIA & LOS PUMAS - NAMIBIA: the press had not much to say since these aren´t important teams. The only ones that paid attention when THE PUMAS won their bonus points were the Irish. Many important Irish newspapers mentioned and made fun of "south american operistic display" when our players sang our national anthem before every match.

LOS PUMAS - IRELAND: It took the Irish press over 24hs to digest they lost 30-15 against the argentine team. There was no update in the online editions; and when they finally started reacting, they just spoke of their own miseries, but never accepted LOS PUMAS had a good match.

Of course the English press found material to stick their dagger into the agonizing Irish heart. How did they do this? Just criticing LOS PUMAS. For one, they seemed flaberghasted with what they called an "out of place" south american carnival reaction to the win. Then toghether with the rest of the press, they mentioned that LOS PUMAS don´t play rugby. They just use their boot to much and run behind the ball. A disgrace to well played Rugby.
Even old former Wallaby wing David Campese said that this was a Quarter final match out of context. That it didn´t match the RWC level, and that LOS PUMAS just offer a ping pong game which is not Rugby. (I guess its because although a good runner, he couldn´t even "kick the can".

LOS PUMAS - SCOTLAND: According to the general british press, LOS PUMAS had a scrappy victory and abused of kicking. If the match would of lasted 10 more minutes, SCOTLAND would of had humilliated LOS PUMAS and sent them where they don´t bother any longer.

CONCLUSIONS:

After the quarter finals, I understand why the whole rugby world is upside down.

While LOS PUMAS are a anti-rugby kicking and boot team, England is a fine strategical kicking team. Just imagine they won they´re world cup with a drop kick and eliminated the Wallabies without scoring a single try. Just using the boot.
LOS PUMAS are a disgrace because they defend as if it was their last match and block the oposition neutralizing them. France won against the AB blocking them, showing some courage and with a forward pass. Now this is Rugby.

Now, since nor England nor France are in south america, their girlie shouting and jumping after winning ain´t a carnival. It is just tough men happy for achieving victory.

We saw grown players in England and France motivated and practically in tears during the national anthems were song. Now, this isnt operistical, its just tough men defending the colours of their country.

Regarding the scots needing 10 more minutes, I understand that soccer is a 90 minutes game. Not Rugby.

The facts are that THE PUMAS beat 3 of the 6 nations teams without playing Rugby. They received only 4 tries in five international matches. No PUMA has seen the yellow card, and we play on sunday against the Bocks.
Best of all, we are the underdogs in this match.
We can lose, but we also can win, just see what happened with FRA - NZ and ENG - AUS.
What ever the result, we´ll be proud of our Players, we´ll sing our national anthem "operistically" cause we feel it as a nation. We, ll jump and dance if we win, because it´ll be a Carnival.
And furthermore, we,ve showed the world that Rugby continues evolving and that our tactics will dominate the Rugby scenario for the next 10 years.

LOS PUMAS DESERVE RESPECT.

VAMOS PUMAS CARAJO!!!!!!!


  • 40.
  • At 12:05 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Steve McNair wrote:

This has to be one of the worst displays by a Scotland team for many a year!
They usually play with huge passion and a high workrate!
Argentina, who I am sure no one under rate played with great skill and control, and managed so many turn overs that it was embarrassing!
As a supporter since the days of Ken Scotland, Scotland has always been blessed with great front-row forwards brilliant half-backs and magnificent full-backs.
Today they don't appear to have a back who can offer a serious threat to the opposition, and it is difficult to see how they can be a threat to any of the Major nations.
I think Hadden has strangled the team's spirit!!

  • 41.
  • At 12:10 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • James wrote:

The attitude of Frank Hadden and many others is infuriating; if you go into a competition defining success as reaching and then losing the quarter final then that is what will happen. How can the players be expected to put their all into the game when they are being given the message from their own coach and press that they've come as far as they can and it is acceptable to lose now. Had England and France gone out with that attitude this weekend they would certainly have lost too.

Scotland have been very lucky in this competition. In reality they have put in two decent performances against second tier teams, not even bothered to show up to play the best team in the world at their home stadium and then scraped by against a very poorly performing Italian side. So effectively they have only won one competitive match and that was against Italy; how far have they really come in the last 4 years?

They cannot blame poor fortune, Argentina were way below par and gave Scotland every opportunity to win the quarter final. Unfortunately Scotland were defeated by a lack of ambition, self belief, basic ball handling skills and some terrible decision making. This was a very poor tactical performance from Frank Hadden and there were some very poor individual performances too.

  • 42.
  • At 01:31 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Pablo wrote:

Andrew (#38): just words are just a masterpiece. UK boys, please read it and be a bit humble to accept reality.

  • 43.
  • At 01:36 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Pablo wrote:

Andrew (#38): your words are just a masterpiece. UK boys, please read it and be a bit humble to accept reality.

Wow! How much you can learn reading this blog.


1 If you loose it’s not because of you else blame the winner It’s cool and make you feel better.
2 If Arg win by 6 they were lucky but if France or England win by 2 there are just wonderful tactical thinkers.
3 If Arg use their boot they play ping pong such a shame bloody argies how can? But if a six nation team use their boot is pure tactical rugby.
4 If 80 minutes are not enough why not add another 10m extra? Is not fair, bua, bua...? Isn’t it?

Conclusion a lot of if for rugby I suppose you can make a whole loop in PHP with less than that.

Here my own loop
If we beat SA by 1 or 10 points{
I will be happy drink a lot of bears with friends and eat like a dog;
}else if we loose{

I will congratulate SA I’ll be proud of Los Pumas drink a lot of bears and eat like a dog;

}else if my wife wants{

I will make love with her;
}


Come on Scotland you can do better than that, if it is something that makes rugby fans different from football fans is that we take like a man and celebrate after the match with our opponent whatever the result was.

I take my hat of to the Scotland team we faced on Sunday they were the better team we faced already.


VAMOS LOS PUMAS and good luck to SA but not too much, hahaha!

  • 45.
  • At 02:51 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Charlie wrote:

#39 Andrew:
I agree 100%
Good luck Pumas!!!

  • 46.
  • At 02:56 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Dave Scott wrote:

I think it was a tense match with both sides struggling with composure and thereby tending to play 'negatively'. The better team, in both senses won i.e. played positives slightly better and played negatives slightly less worse - but is WAS close.

No need to hammer Parks/ S Lamont as we normally give at least one away.

We lost the 'cool head' battle in the 78th(?) minute. Taking 3 points there, regaining possession after kick off would have given us two minutes to get a penalty or a drop goal AND Argentina would have been even more jittery with only a 3-point advantage. My belief is that it was more than just possible to do this,going into extra time with the psychological advantage.

Well, it's history now

  • 47.
  • At 03:50 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Doug M. wrote:

I think The Pumas can consider themselves very lucky. Two chargedowns.. both ended in Argentinian hands - a forward pass called back that was no more forward than many that escaped notice in other games. I also felt the ref was very poor in the first half, awarding penalties against the Scots when the Pumas were continually not staying on their feet and handling in the ruck.

At this point I cannot see the Pumas rolling the Bokke, but it should be an excellent game.

As for Scotland - the backs were very poor for 3/4 of the game, Lamont should be ashamed of himself. But so many elementary skill errors from all players in a game that Scotland should have won. Unusually, Scotland looked the fitter side in the last quarter and should have won it from there.

On a positive note, we have what looks like some good potential, but we also need players who can run on to a pass, and who have the speed as well as the size to test defences. And what has happened to the Scottish breakaways of the past? Jefferies and Beatty must be devastated.

I don't think Hadden has been bad, and we must be realistic about the limitations of the pool of players, but surely we should be looking to make semi-finals at least. For goodness sake, we can be a better side than England and they have an excellent chance of reaching the Final.

  • 48.
  • At 03:56 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • RBV wrote:

Frank Hadden is a disgrace for strangling the ambition out of Scotland. Aiming for a QF exit isn't aiming at all. OK, Scotland aren't the best team in the world, based on individual talent, but they can play well above their individual capacity when courage and confidence are instilled in the team. Why not field the test team for the home game against NZ? Sure, we may lose, we may lose any game, but look at the result the Scots got against a rampant NZ side in South Africa in 95. Sure, they lost that one too, but after the performance they put in, they'd have been confident of tearing Argentina a new one! If the coaching staff convince the players they're saving them from a drubbing by not fielding a strong team, to preserve confidence and team spirit for a game against Italy, combined with an expectation that the QF is as far as they can go beyond that, how are the players supposed to raise their game, confidence and expectations?!? Hadden has to go, he's had his chance, and like his contemporaries in Wales and Ireland, he should be slated for what he's achieved in this RWC. Again, OK, he's done well for Scotland to this point, but lets move forward with a coach (domestic or foreign), a specialist skills coach and instill the belief in the players that they should've had from the first place. They could've beaten Argentina with some confidence and belief, they were in the knockout stages of the RWC, and if they'd have beaten Argentina, they'd be 2 lousy games away from being winners of the 2007 RWC. Anything can happen in knock-out rugby! Nothing else is acceptable to shoot for when you're competing for the greatest prize in your sport. Do Olympic athletes aim to make the QF's only, I don't bloody think so!!!

One last thing, get Dan Parks the hell out of that No. 10 shirt, when is he going to learn that time is in short supply when trying to clear your lines and kicking that chip out on the full, and not giving Sean Lamont at least an opportunity to fight for the ball and try is inexcuseable. A touch short yes, ball still in play, touch too long, the ball, game and 2007 RWC ambitions dead. Thanks Dan, pleasure working with you!

  • 49.
  • At 04:12 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • peter haslam wrote:

I find it hard to understand how you scots dont give us credit for the faith and conviction we have when walking into the pitch... this is a game in which the par of the course is phisical condition, skill and conviction. At this level,conviction is the only variable you can´t buy at the local store... and we had more of it , it seems...

I don't think Frank Hadden is a disgrace at all, nor does Jason White who has publicly backed him and wants him to continue as coach. The lesson to learn in this game was that we needed to get our running and wide passing game going earlier. We looked exciting and as if we might win in the last 20 minutes - should have started like that at half time!!

  • 51.
  • At 06:06 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Alex wrote:

I read post #39 and couldn't agree more. Unfortunately British people tend to be sore losers. Just read their press...

  • 52.
  • At 07:20 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • RBV wrote:

I agree with you, The Laird of Kitakyushu, with some confidence and belief in their ability, they should've opened up sooner. Only then might they 'risk' winning such a game! Alex, we're all sore losers when our teams lose, but I don't take anything away from what Argentina have done both over the last few years and in this competition. They've been absolutely outstanding and fully deserve their place in the last 4. 5 wins out of 6 (or thereabouts) in their meetings with France illustrate just how good Argentina are. Good luck against the Boks too!!!

  • 53.
  • At 07:45 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Peter wrote:

24 hours on and still just the feeling of disappointment

This was a big opportunity missed and sadly the players have to live with that for the mistakes they made and the points they gifted to Argentina

Don’t necessarily agree with the comments regarding lack of fight or tactics, simply that the execution was wrong. However the fact we are talking about what ifs and how near we were to reaching the semi final is a long way away from the disaster that was the 2005 Six Nations and the Matt Williams era

Sadly the Italy game in this year’s Six Nations was the foundation for the tactics. It meant we would not be complacement in the World Cup but it also blew any chance of us looking to play attacking rugby in the big games due to the fear factor. Time for change

Frank Hadden has turned the squad round, he has developed competition for places and has established a strong defence which when full squad available makes us hard to beat. What he needs to do now is lift the conservative shackles and build an attacking platform to win games.

Not only that he needs to challenge the big players – not just play them for reputation but on form. With the squad depth and players outwith he has got to pick on form and not allow another MDR scenario and pick players because he thinks they will do a job ie Sean Lamont if the form isn’t there he shouldn’t be on the pitch – earn your cap

Standoff and outside centre remain the problem area. Parks / Patterson may not be the answer but it is the best we have got. Godman (woeful display last Fri night v the Ospreys) isn’t Magners class never mind International class and until Gregor and Blair show they can perform at the highest levels then we have to get on with it

Hadden should be given the chance to build on his work these last two years, If need be bring someone in to assit with coaching but change the game plan. The backs are fast and can beat players but not when they receive the ball 5 metres behind the gain line above their head with the defence already lined up

Start with the 6 Nations, get a winning side on the park and develop it over the next two years. Then we can start planning about semi finals and more in 2011

  • 54.
  • At 08:00 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Jonathan wrote:

I think where Hadden did fail is in his subs. Why take off Ali Hogg, I thought he was one of our best players and perhaps he should've taken Taylor off instead. Also think Mike Blair had a poor game when he was on and Simon Webster needs to get a new pair of boots! How many times does he slip when trying to cut back against the grain!!? What has happened to Sean Lamont? He seems to have lost the ability to bullock his way through tackles, maybe the opposition are just more wary of him now. Hard to criticise anyone too much though as I don't think either of the 2 teams actually deserve to be in the RWC semis. Arguably they were the 2 worst teams in the last 8, Fiji included.

Now the Scots have bulked themselves up to a level where they can no longer be pushed around by beefy forward packs they can perhaps focus more on support running, handling and passing skills. I thought the ball retention wasn't great throughout RWC and we seem to blow more linebreaks than other teams by not supporting the runners enough when they do get through. Passing and handling skills were pretty dreadful, I saw too many passes floated behind the receiver, that gives the cover defence time to reorganise. If we can sharpen up our backline play there is no reason why we can't challenge for the 6N this year.

  • 55.
  • At 08:44 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Rob wrote:

Fully agree with Alex's comment (#11) about accepting mediocrity. Yes, Scotland moved the ball around at the end, but, by that time Argentina were a tired side that had not played up to their potential anyway. Would not have had the same impact earlier on I think when they were fresher. Also, the main thing to remember is that Scotland's backline are/have been poor in attacking and making breaks and penetration which other teams seem to be able to do! Going forward, this is definitely an area of concern that needs addressed! This RL type of lying flat does not cut it - need to adrees this in coaching; apart from Alan Tait (AT), is their an attacking Backs Coach? AT may be great at defence etc. but need a talented attacking Back Coach to teach the rudiments of Backs play. Finally, going forward, I feel now is the time to 'blood' young players and start building for the next WC. Will young Barcley now get his chance to perform as a No 7 in a game that insn't NZ! We have used a No 8 in that position for past couple of years but I feel that it is time to move Hogg back to his true No 8 position. Just some thoughts going forward

  • 56.
  • At 08:50 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Rob wrote:

On the comments about Lamont during the game. If I recall correctly, this is not the first time that he has 'frozen' during a high pressure game - Twickers comes to mind once and I think there was another time as well but can't recall. If this is the case, has he really got the mental hardness to be a top class performing player that we need?

  • 57.
  • At 09:50 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • harryscot wrote:

love ur chat argman!! ur not wrong!! still why did scotland not turn up for this match?!?!? three of the key players in this match were going to be the back three (with the argentina kicking game)and some of the basic errors they made dropping balls in to touch, sometimes not even attempting to catch the ball on the full and returning with less energy than my granny was frustrating to watch. at least both lamonts made some yards when they had ball in hand but did anyone else notice that when paterson caught the ball he just looked scared. he was guranteed to go backwards if not make some ridiculous offload. yeah fair enough his goal-kicking is awesome, but i would much rather have someone in the team with a desire to run the ball and score trys and miss a couple of kicks!!
In general for 60mins of the game scotland just didn't seem to hav worked out that they were in a quarter final of a world cup. before the game i would have happily taken that scoreline if i knew that scotland had at least given it their best shot, after the game i am just left feeling bitter that a massive chance has slipped away..........

  • 58.
  • At 09:53 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • NickM wrote:

What infuriates me more than anything else is all the nay sayers and doom and gloom soothsayers who seem to revel in moaning about Scotland losing.

Of all the games played over the weekend this one was the match between 2 sides so evenly balanced. England and France were clear underdogs not given much hope to win.. and somehow pulled off 2 latter day miracles, however if Mortlock had brought his kicking boots and the French forward pass had been detected things would have been different.

All credit to Argentina, they won a tight and scrappy affair that was too close to call. People are bemoaning the mistakes that Scotland made where in reality it was all down to a little bit of luck. the bounce of the ball went Argentina's way.. and you know what that's what this game is about.

Scotland had their chances but came up short, however Frank Hadden should be thanked and encouraged to continue to build on a young side that will blossom. Under Matt Williams we lost all hope, under Frank a sense of purpose and development has arisen. After 2 years of Frank coaching the side we have seen improvements and with some more time we'll see the fruits of his labour.

The team is getting better but just needs a bit more time to develop. The SRU perhaps needs to rethink it's policies for the domestic game but for the rest of us we should salute the victors of the night and wish them luck against SA.. for they are really going to need it!

  • 59.
  • At 10:49 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • munster_girl wrote:

no 57- i partially agree with you but come on- scotland made some sloppy mistakes especially lamont in the first half. it wasnt luck at all, it was down to tight argentinian defence too.

  • 60.
  • At 11:34 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Conor in Australia wrote:

Gosh, so much written above much of which I agree with. Suffice for me to say as a Scot down under "I am quite simply, disappointed" (but it wasn't as bad as 1991!).
Here's to anybody other than South Afica to lift "Bill" in two weeks time.

  • 61.
  • At 11:38 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Jim wrote:

Ok it was pretty much of a slog.Union seems to have borrowed so much from League that the game has changed beyond recognition. All teams seem to follow formats. Kicking for territory seems to be most of the game now, then try to force a penalty decision in the rucks. There have been moments of pure flair, Fiji had more than their share, but games seem to have been won mostly as the result of dour forward battles and good discipline in scrums and rucks. Personally in the modern game I think the young Scottish team have a pretty good future. Realistically they could have won given just a handful fewer errors.

  • 62.
  • At 11:59 AM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Steve McNair wrote:

What I fail to understand how any player can knock a ball into touch in their own 22, not once but three times in one match!!..and then fail to touch down or mark the ball??
..as for KL, whose kicking was brilliant,has anyone ever seen him make a full blooded head-on tackle?
...and why wasn't Cusiter on from the start?

Does anyone else out there remember the Andy Irvine or Gavin Hastings days, when our full-backs could score from their own 25 and Kick?
..or the awesome back-row players like Calder, White and jeffrey? who were a match for any players in the rugby world of their day!!
Or wonderfull half-backs like Laidlaw,Rutherford,Chalmers,Townsend etc, and the succession of world class props like David Sole or 'Mighty Mouse McLaughlan?
I can't think of any player in the current squad that another Nation would actually want!
We were always a team of passion and even when we lost we would go down fighting....but sadly on Sunday evening we didn't really start, or perhaps the Pumas were just too good!
I would like to see them win the WC and then get invited into the 7 Nations if the Tri-Nations doen't want them!

  • 63.
  • At 12:38 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Joe I'Anson wrote:

In response to the views on who was the better team, unfortunately, regardless of how well we played towards the end, the better team was Argentina - how I hate admitting that!

To put the game in context, Argentina were at times aggresive, powerful, basic, boring, determined etc but they executed what they did very well. They have been playing their style of rugby with the core of this group of players for years. This Scotland squad has a core of only 10 to 15 players who've been consistantly involved over maybe the last 4 years, many of the rest have only been with the A or B squad for one or two at most.

Scotland are improving and our forwards in particular have already taken a massive step against possibly the top pack in world rugby, and with players like Henderson and the Lamonts we can again become a potent attacking side, unseen since the last 5 nations!

Have some pride in the team lads and for any who berated us for celebrating 'only' getting a QF spot, grow up and hope your own team can pull themselves together and improve like Scotland have.

  • 64.
  • At 12:44 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • j barrett wrote:

All you apologists who claim scotland did alright are exactly what holds this nation back,look at it objectively game by game we were poor,this needs to be adressed,having an aspiration of only making the quartres is defeatist;we lost before we arrived,lack of ambition equals lack of confidence.

  • 65.
  • At 01:40 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • p****d off wrote:

Will #5, I could kiss you for writing that! Finally someone with some sense!
Agree 100%! Not that that counts for much!
Hadden smadden- he started well enough as coach, then ran out of ideas and now looks like he is begining to do a 'Matt Williams' on us,over-coaching the players so they end up unable to use their own heids on the pitch to play to what is in front of them there and then, not what was up on the coaches board earlier!!

  • 66.
  • At 01:51 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • themaninjapan wrote:

British and living in the land of the rising sun.

Great observation #39. Lets face it the Brits don't like winners of any description( how much negative shite did we write about Daley, Linford and steve davis).

Argentina were by far the better side and didn't play to the best of their abilities and still'won'!

Any team that wins looking worse than it actually is,is a great team.

England are currently playing 10 man rugby but no one writes about it.

NZ played france and the ref and Sa had to play 'tight' negative rugby to repell Fji.

Cast our minds back to 2003 Eng beat Fra but the french didn't beat the weather conditions. And scotland just didn't beat the pumas.

Lets get behind winners;people, press and all.

Go on Argentina, make the sport proud and 'positive'!

  • 67.
  • At 02:01 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Jamie wrote:

Hugely dissappointing throughout as far as i'm concerned.

In order to compete against the top teir nations we need to ba able to control possession; control the game; and pick up points. We cannot!

Why has Agrentinian and Italian rugby progressed so much over the past 10 years, where we seem to have gone backwards?

Our professional club structure is entirely to blame. where the future is not all doom and gloom, the SRU need to seriously put a structure together that will benefit Scottish rugby in the future, and for future World Cups.

  • 68.
  • At 02:01 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Tom wrote:

"Argentina looked beatable"....but Scotland lost...France thought the same, but lost..Georgia lost....Ireland as well, but lost....reality is not how the other team "looks" but rather do you beat them or don't you in that particular game. Scotland didn't win, obviously(in that game, at least).. it couldn't, regardless of how the argentines "looked" as a team simply because retrospect is based on "ifs". "Perception" of the other team is to tricky to put much weight on it.Argentina beat Scotland in that game, period. To talk about beating Argentina in terms of "could-have/should-have/might-have/would-have" leads nowhere and is the typical "unhappy" losers analysis, not reality. Next game IS reality which is the nice part about sports, always another game for everyone...Scotland should study the Argentina game, learn, advance, play better next time.

  • 69.
  • At 02:20 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • j barrett wrote:

JOE I,ANSON,you miss the point,most of us objective scots realise we barely scraped through against italy,were simply saying as we saw it,burying your head in the sand isnt helping scottish rugby,someone has to adress the issues the media certainly isnt,its not negativety im afraid its reality.

  • 70.
  • At 03:15 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Barbara wrote:

Last Sunday during the Rugby World Cup, watching the game between Scotland & Argentina, my heart was divided, because since I am an Ewan’s (McGregor) fan ( to me he is a versatile and great actor and also has an “inusual” original personality), Scotland have become a country to learn about at Internet.
So I was particularly interested in that game. And I realised that the Scottish team was a very good one to deal with (Chris Paterson one of the best), so I was very pleased to see such a good game!!! The Scots have nothing to be ashamed of.
But as an Argentinian, I became very proud for the success of our excellent team, the Pumas, of course!!!

  • 71.
  • At 03:41 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • peter haslam wrote:

I believe to even get to the WC you need physical condition, sporting skill, and a game plan for each match.... that´s the par of the course.
What makes the difference to win a game at this level,is a combination of who makes the least mistakes, and who has the strongest mental conviction.
I think our conviction had a strong role in defeating France, Ireland and Scotland. three teams that said they were pumped, but not as much as we were...
Go Pumas !

  • 72.
  • At 04:59 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • JasonWhiteIsGod wrote:

My opinion is that scotland left it far too late, and have done in several matches in the past. The games against England and France in 2007 are prime examples. Twice they scored in the dieing moments and came agonisingly close on Sunday night. I would say Frank Hadden needs to instill more confindence in the ability of his more than capable players. Simon Webster at 13, one of Scotland's most gifted runners rarely saw the ball in attack as the gameplan was and always has been Blair-Parks, Parks kicks.

As a scottish boy living in England I prayed for that semi-final place.

  • 73.
  • At 05:06 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • JasonWhiteIsGod wrote:

My opinion is that scotland left it far too late, and have done in several matches in the past. The games against England and France in 2007 are prime examples. Twice they scored in the dieing moments and came agonisingly close on Sunday night. I would say Frank Hadden needs to instill more confindence in the ability of his more than capable players. Simon Webster at 13, one of Scotland's most gifted runners rarely saw the ball in attack as the gameplan was and always has been Blair-Parks, Parks kicks.

As a scottish boy living in England I prayed for that semi-final place.

  • 74.
  • At 05:18 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • andymathieson wrote:

deja vu? Well at least it seems Scotland have managed to stop throwing intercepted passes! The reason for that is the back line now lies deep (DEEEEEP!), which is from one extreme to the other when in the 6N this year they were just too flat, running flat is fine if you can hit the intended team mate (e.g O'Gara -> O'Driscoll, give Scotland those 2 and all our probs would be sorted overnight!) So now they lie so deep because they're scared and all the oppositions need to do is line them up for the tackle. I agree with most of the comments about S Lamont, I've never particularly rated him, apart from being a strong runner he has no other skill (hands like feet), If Simon Danielli hadn't injured his groin, S Lamont would never have been in the starting 15, but watch out, big Si's back and playing for Ulster this year (scoring in his first match) so keep an eye on the Magners League! Someone made the suggestion of Thom Evans of Glasgow for the wing as well, I've never seem him play but he's meant to be like S*it off a stick! Still young too so lets hope he gets his chance. He's also small, unlike the big clumsy wings we pick now, who says you have to be big to play rugby? Shane Williams, Christophe Dominici, need I say more?

Since the Borders split and it looked like for a moment Edinburgh were going the same way, a few of Scotlands players have gone down south or to France and Ireland. This could be very positive for the team. Frank Hadden will no longer be able to just pick players who play in Scotland, when some of his stars are elsewhere, and they can only improve with their new teams, how could Chris Cusiter or Kelly Brown ever be expected to mature in a team that finishes bottom of the league every year? (esp when demotion isn't a prob) With Cusiter going to Perpignan, R lamont and S Lawson (both Sale), S Taylor (Stade Francais), Chris Paterson (Gloucester),Rob Dewey and S Danielli (Ulster) hopefully these guys will all benefit from playing for good quality teams. There are still a lot of players at Edinburgh and Glasgow but I think those two teams are going to be much better this year with former England coach Andy Robinson at Edinburgh (ok we know England didn't do to well under him but he's surely an improvement) and Glasgow finishing very strongly last season. So maybe the future is bright, lets set our sights higher now Mr Hadden, we want to win the next 6N, not just our home games!
One wee gripe- I know its ITV and not BBC but when can we get a scottish commentator, and one whos actually watching the match, instead of Stuart Bloody Barnes!! (maybe the BBC will show the next RWC, some hope!)

Can't wait for the next two weekends, France to beat S Africa in the final, would you have believed it?!

  • 75.
  • At 05:45 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • Noddy of Nod wrote:

I think we have a few relatives of good old Frank here posting away.

How anyone can be satisfied with how Scotland performed throughout the World Cup is beyond me. Credit to the RGs who more than deserve to be in the semi's, although they didn't play great rugby either on Sat but at least they've shown they can. Would really like to to say the same for Scotland.

Frank doesn't know what he is doing anymore. He steadied the ship after the Matt Williams debacle but I think any coach would of done the same. Our players are better than what they've shown under Hadden.

  • 76.
  • At 05:55 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • leo wrote:

is it the new fashion or what , now it seeems to be that scotland didn't lost with argentina ,just they let them win, they could have played better but they didn't , c'mon! you lost and is not the first time , the 5 previos matches against argentina you also have lost , own your defeat and the winers to be a good loser is part of the game

  • 77.
  • At 09:41 PM on 09 Oct 2007,
  • fly half wrote:

I wonder how Scotland would have fared if they had played the first team throughout the tournament? Personally the AB selection left me utterly deflated. The lack of ambition this implied (a qf is enough - Hadden et al) is thrown into relief by the heroics of France and England (teams Scotland have beaten in the last 2 seasons). In may ways my enthusiasm for Scotland's progress died on that grey afternoon at Murrayfield.

  • 78.
  • At 03:24 AM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • Tyrone Samuel wrote:

What baffles me most is, that there is no comment of how good the pumas were.No doubt they didnt play to their full potential but they certainly were a tinge better than the Scotts. Scotland had a few chances but so did Argentina.Lets face it they are and were the better team. Its better for all the teams such as Wales,Ireland & scotland to not over estimate themselves and under estimate the teams that has beaten you, dont take away the credit from the Pumas with worthless post-mortem.
In the final analysis the ABs & the Wallabies were too cocky and complacent thats what did them in as for the Irish,Scotts & the Welsh were not upto it through out the whole world cup...

  • 79.
  • At 10:02 AM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • j b wrote:

scotland the most boring team at this rwc,they didnt deserve the semi.

  • 80.
  • At 12:20 PM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • alistair Stewart wrote:

Scoltand were the most boring team at the World Cup. One idea kick in tha air and run after and depend on a penalty. Good job they failed to make the Semi Finals as it would have been a mismatch.

  • 81.
  • At 12:54 PM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • Trid wrote:

The Puma's are a joy to watch and deserved their win, I did feel they perhaps where saving their energy but it was an enjoyable match because Scotland put so much effort into the 2nd half.

I hope the pumas carry on to the final as it really helps develop and spread the game.

VAMOS PUMAS

  • 82.
  • At 03:40 PM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • Cock of the North wrote:

Scotland have no complaints they were always going to lose this game from the moment they stopped believing in themselves ( Running out the B Team ) against NZ all you did Frank was convince your team that they wernt good enough what happened to good old Scottish pastime of fighting anybody... You ran up the white flag at Murrayfield for all to see shame on you.... Just like the Welsh who locked the all blacks in a room to do the Hokey Cokey and the Italians who turned there backs rather than face them. Argentina saw this weakness and took away your dreams England may not be in this RWC for much longer but at least they believed in themselves.

  • 83.
  • At 04:12 PM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • alan wrote:

We lost because we made so many errors, many of them unforced.

When we arrived at the stadium, I watched the side doing some drills unopposed: they knocked on 3 times in 5 minutes. Gave us all a sense of foreboding and how right we were.

The team doesn't have the skills to deliver beyond a quarter final spot, and linked to that they are mentally not ready for big games when we always bottle. Frank knows it, hence such conservative tactics from someone all in Scottish rugby know loves to throw the ball around. He learned the hard way against Italy.

  • 84.
  • At 04:13 PM on 10 Oct 2007,
  • alan wrote:

We lost because we made so many errors, many of them unforced.

When we arrived at the stadium, I watched the side doing some drills unopposed: they knocked on 3 times in 5 minutes. Gave us all a sense of foreboding and how right we were.

The team doesn't have the skills to deliver beyond a quarter final spot, and linked to that they are mentally not ready for big games when we always bottle. Frank knows it, hence such conservative tactics from someone all in Scottish rugby know loves to throw the ball around. He learned the hard way against Italy.

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