Joseph Suaali’i claims ‘England played their hearts out’ against ‘rock up and play’ Samoa in opening game

Joseph Suaali’i has become the latest Samoa player to suggest they were underprepared for their opening World Cup game against England.

Despite going into the game as favourites, Suaali’i and his Samoan team-mates were put the sword by Shaun Wane’s team in Newcastle in week one of the tournament.

Since that 60-6 humiliation, Samoa have responded well, winning all their games, including an epic 20-18 victory of Pacific rivals Tonga in Warrington on Sunday to setup a rematch against the hosts.

And speaking about this Saturday’s crunch clash against England at the Emirates Stadium, star fullback Suaali’i has followed the comments of Jarome Luai in claiming that Samoa didn’t have the relevant preparation time for the opening game.

“We came in with a lot of expectation and a lot of pressure after putting together a great team,” Suaali’i told Newscorp.

“We didn’t really train that much together. It was kind of like ‘rock up and hope for the best’. England played their hearts out and played a good game.

“But we weren’t there on that day. I think that’s probably the best thing that happened to us, the loss.”

As mentioned, Samoa have won every game since the defeat to England and Suaali’i believes they are capable of beating the hosts despite losing by 56 points to them just three weeks ago.

“It humbled us,” added Suaali’i. “It gave us a platform to go and play against Greece, France and Tonga.

“Since (the loss) we’ve built our connections and combos. I believe that we can beat England, even though they’re a very good team.

“The game against Tonga was big, but coming into the semi-finals we want to step it up another level. The end goal for us is to win.”

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