Day eight and nine of the Rugby World Cup has treated us to some truly spectacular matches, games we will remember for a long long time. Day ten has the potential to do similar things from the one match on show today from Pool A which will see the winless Scotland going up against Samoa.
Scotland vs Samoa – Pool A
Scotland need to act and put up an top performance to keep their World Cup campaign alive after the devastating loss to Ireland in their opener. They have been forced to make a overhaul to their back row with Magnus Bradbury, Jamie Richie and Blade Thomson taking over in the injury ravaged area. The issue for Scotland to me is their inability to adapt their play and against Ireland were extremely predictable. Yes, Finn Russell and Stuart Hogg are fantastic players but if the defence knows that each and every play will go to Russell, then Hogg each and every phase, it becomes very simple to read. Scotland need to mix that up, get more from the pack running short and give more opportunity to Sam Johnson, who looked strong in his limited chances against Ireland, to create. This is make or break for Scotland, if there is any tricks or plays up the sleeve they will need to come out sooner than than later or it may be too late to bother.
We can talk about what Scotland needs to do, but for me, this match is going to come down to which Samoa comes out to play. They will know this is a massive chance for them to join that race with Japan to qualify. They have tough matches to come but this is a must win for them too. If they rock up with the right attitude, wanting to work hard and get a good start, then momentum and confidence will take over and just like all pacific nations, when that confidence kicks in, things stick, the risky pays off and everything locks in place. They welcome back captain Jack Lam to number eight to an otherwise settled and very strong pack which will want to use its physicality over Scotland. If they can bully the Scottish pack then its on for this very explosive backline. Ed Fidow, Alapati Leiua and Belgium Tuatagaloa are a huge threats going forward and Tusi Pisi knows how to unleash them. There’s a lot of ifs and buts for Samoa, yes they are definitely good enough but it needs many puzzle pieces to find the right spaces for things to click. On the other hand Scotland will have structure and construct a plan to frustrate the Samoans. I think it’s going to be very close, but one or two little slips for Samoa could be their fall. A match that can very easily go either way, the Rugby World Cup is really humming in week two!
RESULT = Scotland by 3
I will have predictions DAILY for the Rugby World Cup! So make sure to subscribe to the page for updates when a new predictions goes live or check back each day for the next days matches. Who is your pick? Lets me know in the comments below and as always, thanks for stopping by Behind The Posts!