Rugby World Cup: Inspired Manu Samoa set sights on Argentina with dreams of quarter-final place

Manu Samoa perform the Siva Tau.
Manu Samoa perform the Siva Tau. Photo credit: Getty Images

Samoa are ready to fire in their crunch World Cup Pool D match against Argentina after taking their time to get going in their tournament opener against Chile, coach Seilala Mapusua said.

The Pacific islanders eventually ran out 43-10 winners over the Chileans but Mapusua said they could not afford a similarly sluggish start against the Pumas, who have twice reached the World Cup semi-finals.

"The boys realise that we're in the tournament now, we've arrived at the party and there are no second chances," said Mapusua.

"So this week in the whole squad there's been a real lift and an energy and we know that we've got a huge game against the Pumas on Friday. We won't be short of motivation."

Argentina lost their opener to England and will be desperate to get their campaign back on track at Stade Geoffroy-Guichard in Saint-Ettienne.

"We are under no illusion about the threat that Argentina poses and we believe that if we stick to how we want to play and play the Manu Samoa way then I'm confident that we'll be able to stop Argentina," Mapusua added.

Mapusua made three changes to his starting line-up from the team that beat Chile with prop Paul Alo-Emile and Brian Alainu'uese coming into the pack and the powerful Ben Lam named on the right wing after recovering from injury.

"He's a very big man who can move quickly and is a genuine threat with the ball in hand," Mapusua said of Lam.

"He brings a lot into the wide channels, just his pure power and the way he plays the game so we're looking forward to finally getting him on the field this weekend."

Former All Blacks prop Charlie Faumuina will play his first World Cup match for Samoa after being named on the bench.

The 2015 World Cup winner was one of two former New Zealand forwards named in the matchday squad along with Steven Luatua but former All Blacks first-five Lima Sopoaga misses out with a calf strain.

Christian Leali'ifano retains the No.10 jersey for the match against an Argentina side led by his former Wallabies coach Michael Cheika. 

"I'm glad he's not playing," Leali'ifano joked.