Scrumhalf Danny Care believes England manger Martin Johnson will be rewarded for sticking with his young side for the clash against the Boks.
Johnson has made just one change to the side that lost to Australia last week, bringing in James Haskell for Tom Croft on the blindside and the 21-year-old scrumhalf is delighted his manager has kept faith in his young troops.
“The great thing about the squad is that there is a massive amount of competition for places. You have to be on your mettle every game,” said Care. “But it’s great that Martin has put that trust in us.
“If there were loads of changes I don’t think we would ever gel as a squad. Sticking together is going to bring us closer and make us better. Losing an international game is heartbreaking, but the frustration drives you on. It’s a great motivational tool.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better game than playing against the world champions at home to redeem how we played last week.”
Johnson was unhappy with the way his young side failed to stick to the script against the Wallabies. This time there will be an added emphasis on structure, but this should hardly subdue the nuggety scrumhalf’s enterprising play.
“I like to tap and go and the coaches and captain will always back you if you see something is on,” said Care. “They are happy that I’m having a go. They trust you.
“There were times when we weren’t working as a 15 against Australia, when we were doing some individual stuff. But we are still learning as a team and sometimes you do go off script a bit. That is the challenge for us, to stick to the system and believe it will work.
“We’re still learning the way we want to play, it was only our second game, hopefully we’ll get better and better each week.”
England’s biggest challenge will be reducing the penalty count which saw them gift the Wallabies 21 points for unnecessary infringements.
“We had a bit of ill-discipline last week which cost us. Also some of our basic skills weren’t up to scratch. We have to massively step up this week.
“We gave away silly penalties which normally we wouldn’t. The mindset now is to cut them out and we have definitely got the ability to do that. It’s a dream for me to be in the side to face the world champions. I’m proud to be in this position and hopefully it will be a special day for the whole team.”