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Last Updated: Saturday, 8 September 2007, 06:50 GMT 07:50 UK
Coach asks Argentina to stay calm
Argentina beat France 17-12 in the World Cup opener in Paris
Argentina have now beaten France five times in their last six meetings
Argentina coach Marcelo Loffreda warned his side to remain focused after their stunning 17-12 win over hosts France in the World Cup opener in Paris.

"We are overcome with happiness, but we shouldn't get above ourselves because it is only the first match," he said.

"We have given ourselves a good start and we need to take advantage of it. We are going to take it game by game."

Argentina play Georgia on Tuesday and Namibia on 22 September before facing Ireland in Paris on 30 September.

Stade Francais full-back Ignacio Corleto scored the only try of the Pool D game to help Argentina to a 17-9 half-time lead.

The fast-improving Pumas, who have now beaten France five times in six games, then mounted a staunch defensive display to hold off the increasingly desperate hosts in front of a capacity 80,000-strong crowd at the Stade de France.

We are not the best technicians, we are not even the most physical, but we play with heart

Argentina skipper Agustin Pichot

The victory ranks with Argentina's greatest rugby achievements, alongside the 1999 play-off win over Ireland that put the Pumas in the quarter-finals for the first and only time.

They went on to lose to France in Dublin.

Argentina skipper Agustin Pichot said: "For myself, coach Marcelo Loffreda and the rest of the team this result is very important.

"We are not the best technicians, we are not even the most physical, but we play with heart.

"This won't sink in for a while. We won't know what we have done, because you never know the context, but this team has a hunger to write history.

"As a team, we just want to make history for Argentina rugby."


Many of the Pumas play in France, and Pichot added: "France have helped us to develop, taking us in as their sons. We thank them."

Loffreda acknowledged that his team had stuck to his game-plan, keeping the ball tight and away from the wings from which it could easily concede tries on the counterattack.

"We wanted to play it in the forwards as that is the way we played. We played smart," he said.

"We came with a plan to beat France and we knew that it would not be easy but this is an important win for Argentina.

"We have a difficult pool and to start with a good win was important."

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France RWC team guide
04 Sep 07 |  Team guides
Argentina RWC team guide
04 Sep 07 |  Team guides
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16 Aug 07 |  Rugby Union
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05 Feb 07 |  Laws & Equipment


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