'England have players who know to perform on the biggest occasions' - Steve Borthwick

Steve Borthwick is backing England to create an impact in the World Cup
Steve Borthwick is backing England to create an impact in the World Cup

England head coach Steve Borthwick insists they have the firepower in the squad to create an impact in the upcoming Rugby World Cup campaign.

Borthwick, who took over from Eddie Jones at the start of the year endured a tough stint until now with the side finishing fifth in the Six Nations tournament and lost three out of the four warm-up games.

The defeats also saw England drop down to eighth place in the World Rugby Rankings and they will be taking on an in-form Argentina side coached by Michael Cheika in the tournament opener on Saturday and the 43-year-old believes they have the talent in the squad to make a turnaround.

“I look at this team and see the likes of Ellis Genge, Joe Marler, Owen Farrell, Courtney Lawes, Maro Itoje…the list could go on,” Borthwick said.

“We’ve got players who know how to perform on the biggest occasions and that’s one of the central things we need to do this Saturday – perform together.

“We’re going against a really good Argentina side, potentially the best Argentinian side in their history.

“So we know that’s a challenge but it’s one the boys can’t wait to get involved in.

“I can’t stress enough, coming to Le Touquet, being here – the World Cup’s really now begun. This is it. We are in it.”

Speaking about England's struggle this year, Borthwick citing the cases of Ireland and France said the focus is on a continuous consistent approach as they look to build on.

“We always study the tactical elements of what we do. I said when I came in, we need to build a way of playing and to have a consistent base,” Borthwick added.

“You can’t change everything from one week to another week. You need to have a way of playing you can build upon.

“Ideally you start building that post the last World Cup, as most other teams have. You have seen the growth of Ireland and France – these teams who have started building since then. We’re not one of them.

“We’ve been trying to build it over the past six months and in many ways, because the coaching team only came together 10 or 11 weeks ago, we’ve been trying to do this for 10 or 11 weeks.

“What I’ve been trying to do is strengthen the direction we’re going in and trying to get better at it. For us it’s continuing the growth and making the foundations stronger.”