With Eddie Jones this evening naming a 24-man squad to take on the Pumas in the third game of the autumn internationals, we’ve put together the likely starting lineup and bench to take on one of the world’s best and most consistent sides.
The front row is likely to stay the same, but there will definitely be a change in the second row with Joe Launchbury banned for two weeks for kicking his opponent in the Fiji match last weekend.
Jones may decide to move Courtney Lawes to the front of the line to accommodate the returning George Kruis, who has recovered from a serious ankle injury.
Alternatively, the head coach could opt to promote Bath lock Charlie Ewels to the starting line-up, but this would be a bold statement given the 21-year-old only just made his debut against the Fijians.
Northampton Saints’ Tom Wood should return to the openside berth, with Teimana Harrison most likely to be demoted from the 23, although it appears he is fighting with Wasps’ Nathan Hughes for the back row bench spot.
In the back line Semesa Rokoduguni and Marland Yarde were both excluded from the reduced 24-man squad, meaning besides the returning Jonny May there is no other dedicated wing in the squad.
Therefore, it means either Jonathan Joseph or Elliot Daly will fill the other wing spot, with the latter having made his first start on the wing for England last weekend and impressing with his performance.
Alex Goode, despite starting for England against Fiji, has been dropped from the squad and it would appear Harlequins’ Mike Brown will once more start for the Red Rose.
On the bench, Henry Slade should retain his bench spot, offering cover at 10, 12 and 13, and league convert Ben Te’o continuing his union development as a replacement once more.
Pundit Arena’s Predicted England XV
1) Mako Vunipola
2) Dylan Hartley (c)
3) Dan Cole
4) Courtney Lawes
5) George Kruis
6) Chris Robshaw
7) Tom Wood
8) Billy Vunipola
9) Ben Youngs
10) George Ford
11) Jonny May
12) Owen Farrell
13) Jonathan Joseph
14) Elliot Daly
15) Mike Brown
Bench: Jamie George, Joe Marler, Kyle Sinckler, Charlie Ewels, Nathan Hughes, Danny Care, Ben Te’o, Henry Slade
Paul Wassell, Pundit Arena
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