England 48-14 Samoa: Eddie Jones wanted ‘examination’ at Twickenham
Eddie Jones says he would have been “disappointed” had England not struggled in Saturday’s win over Samoa.
The hosts, who had beaten Argentina and Australia in the previous two autumn Tests, ran in seven tries to win 48-14.
There was a 31-minute gap between points for England either side of half-time at Twickenham, before a late flurry saw them prevail with ease.
“That’s the sort of examination we wanted, particularly after playing Australia,” said head coach Jones.
“When you’re playing against a side you’re supposed to beat by a big score, the mindset you need for that sort of game is something you only get by experience.
“We started the game well and then thought the game was going to flow and going to be easy.
“We want to find out these things now, what players struggle to do. And then we can help them and they can help themselves fix it.”
England side, who featured nine changes from last weekend’s victory over Australia, struggled to maintain fluency at times.
Mike Brown, Alex Lozowski and Charlie Ewels scored for England in the first half before Elliot Daly (two), Henry Slade and Semesa Rokoduguni crossed in the final quarter.
With a nod to their World Cup opener in 2019, Jones added: “You don’t want to find these things out in the 60th minute of the game against Tonga in Kobe, that some players aren’t up to it.”
England finished their year with nine victories from 10 games, with a Six Nations defeat by Ireland in March their only blemish.
Can England make Six Nations history?
Jones will now turn his attentions to the 2018 Six Nations in February, where his side will aim to become the first side to lift the trophy three years running.
“I’m excited about the Six Nations as we’ve got a chance to create history,” said the Australian, who has won 22 of his 23 games in charge.
“We reassemble in eight weeks’ time. The next eight weeks is a great opportunity for players to show how much desire they’ve got to be part of a World Cup-winning side.
“A lot of it goes out the window because some blokes could now not show that they’ve got the desire to work hard, so we start again.”
Analysis – ‘England played in fits and starts’
Former England centre Mike Tindall on BBC Two: “Eddie Jones would have been frustrated. England went from being so clinical to providing opportunities for Samoa by people being a second late on their breakdowns. England weren’t that comfortable. They were doing a good job but they needed to re-establish themselves as a dominant force.”
Former England lock Simon Shaw: “It was an interesting fixture today. You probably would have predicted the scoreline but the manner of the game was more unpredictable. England had a good start and a good finish but in between they only played in fits and starts.
“There were lots of unforced errors – people seemed to be trying too hard. Samoa made it a torrid time around the breakdowns for England and committed lots of players which disrupted them for a while.”
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