Germany’s loss to the Manu Samoa team was an eye opener.
Those were the words of German vice-captain, Sean Armstrong, after they were hammered 66-15 by Manu Samoa last Saturday at Apia Park.
“We learned a few lessons from the Samoan team from our match; we know we lost the physical battle. At times we managed to put them under pressure but we were just not consistent enough. We allowed them to get more quick ball, missed a lot of tackles, we were just chasing the game after that,” he said.
“They had a strong set piece and that was what we were aiming to exploit and overcome, but then their performance showcased such a huge progress from their previous matches. There are no excuses for us as a result of our performance. We weren’t good enough on the day and the Samoan team really showed us how to play rugby.”
Germany will need to focus more on its defence and improve in their tackling as the Samoan players are physically bigger, Sean added.
“But still we missed far too many tackles and let them get away with some very easy opportunities where they scored tries. We are annoyed, not because of the loss, but because we did not execute what we planned. Based on the result today (Saturday), it looks like Samoa pretty much qualified for the World Cup.”
He said Germany did not have ‘superstars’ in its team and the team drew its strength from sticking together and working for each other. But it will not be easy and the team will need to step up in order to ensure Samoa does not qualify.
“At times we let ourselves down and that is one thing that we will have to work on. We need to get that focus and team effort back. The dress room is obviously really quiet and not a good place to be at the moment. I think the guys are a bit dejected, but look that is sports, its rugby, one team wins, one team loses. It is not the end of the road, it was a great challenge.”
Sean also said there was a great crowd that turned up even though it was all blue, but they were just cheering for good rugby.
While he will remember Samoa for its beautiful landscape and natural sites, he said the warmth of the Samoan people made a big impression on him.
“People always approach us, and welcome us to their country that is probably the biggest impression that I will leave with. I will definitely come back for a holiday in Samoa when I get the chance to. We are just looking forward to having a good rest from the match,” he said.
The 2019 Rugby World Cup is the main objective for the team with Sean indicating that his team will need to go a ‘different route’ when they meet in the second qualifying match in Germany.
“The game has given great experience in terms of what we need to improve greatly and come back super strong. We fly back on Sunday so we land on Monday in Germany and there will be more preparations for the rematch in Germany,” he added.