Turning on the style not the priority, insists scrum-half as England get off to a turgid start
ENGLAND saviour Ben Youngs insists winning is all that matters at this stage of the World Cup after his side laboured to a scarcely deserved victory over Argentina on Saturday.
It wasn’t until Youngs’ introduction, nine minutes into the second-half, that England found any semblance of cohesiveness in a performance characterised by basic errors and littered with examples of indiscipline.
The Leicester scrum-half, now fully recovered from the knee injury which threatened his participation in the tournament, pounced for the try which ultimately turned the game in England’s favour and saw them to a narrow 13-9 win over the Pumas.
It was hardly a result or display to inspire the belief that England are capable of emulating their recent World Cup successes, but Youngs maintains winning, rather than pleasing the purists, is the priority right now.
He said: “It doesn’t matter if you win by one point or by twenty points, the point is that we’ve won, and that’s all you can ask for.
“Fair play to Argentina, we always knew it was going to be tough and for 60 minutes or more they frustrated us. Of course I was delighted to get on, it’s always an honour and fortunately the circumstances worked out ok in the end.
“It wasn’t frustrating as such, watching on from the sidelines, Ben Foden made a nice break and we had a few chances and missed a few kicks.”
Indeed, the margin of victory could have somewhat more comfortable had Jonny Wilkinson’s usually reliable radar not malfunctioned.
The Toulon fly-half, only recently restored to the starting line-up at the expense of Toby Flood, missed five of his seven attempts at goal but Youngs doesn’t believe that will knock the World Cup winner’s confidence.
He added: “I wouldn’t kick them! If I had the weight of the nation on my shoulders then there’s no way I’d be making those kicks.
But good players are still good players, and Jonny is world class. He kicked the one that mattered at the end and that really does speak volumes.”