All Blacks v Argentina: ‘He’ll be loving it’ – Pumas coach Michael Cheika weighs in on Ian Foster’s ‘tough’ situation

Argentina coach Michael Cheika. Photo / Photosport

Argentina coach Michael Cheika has offered his perspective on Ian Foster’s difficult period with the All Blacks ahead of the Pumas’ first test of the year in New Zealand on Saturday.

Speaking on Sky Sport’s The Breakdown, Cheika said anyone in Foster’s position would love their job “even when it’s tough”.

“It’s not work at all,” Cheika said of Foster’s tough time as head coach in recent weeks.

“He’s the coach of New Zealand. They’re one of the best countries in the world in rugby. He’ll be loving it. Even when it’s tough mate, it doesn’t matter. That comes with the territory of footy. It gets tough.

“It’s a brilliant position to have. It’s a great honor if you’re in that position and you love it. You get to go out and be involved in footy every day. It doesn’t matter how tough it gets, it’s part of the game just like when you’re a player. “

Asked if he felt the All Blacks were vulnerable, Cheika said: “I’ve been in too many games against New Zealand to even know what that word means for them. The reality is that everyone is lifting their game to play against New Zealand. Everyone.

“There’s so much quality in the team across the board that we don’t really look at it in that way. We’re just taking what we’re analyzing in front of us, the quality of the players and the team as a whole and then trying to work out how can we put them under pressure, make them have to deal with the challenge from us, as well as the normal things that go on in a test match – the intensity, the physicality, all those types of things that go on. “

Cheika also praised the All Blacks for showing character in their victory over the Springboks at Ellis Park, and admitted his side will have a difficult task in Christchurch on Saturday.

“The first game [against South Africa], I felt they were unlucky to have that score line. The second game they showed immense character under huge pressure. And that will only do well for them coming into this game.

“And realistically, everyone is expecting them to dust us in the two games at home. The only people who have got to think the opposite to that is us and believe that way and try and win the small battles along the way.”

Coming off an impressive 48-17 victory over the Wallabies, Chieka said the confidence within his side is building.

“It’s part of what we’re trying to build. The guys haven’t won a heap of Rugby Championship games. It’s about trying to get that winning mentality and that’s something we’re trying to work on. So confidence is a part of that and then trying to back it up on the weekend is the other part. “