Rugby Championship: Steven Hansen expecting challenging Pumas game

New Zealand coach Steven Hansen

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New Zealand coach Steven Hansen is adamant that his side will face a big challenge when they take on Argentina in the Rugby Championship.

Argentina will welcome the All Blacks to the Estadio Ciudad de La Plata as they look to pick up their first win of the competition.

The Pumas have struggled so far and were destroyed in their opening match against South Africa, a defeat that has seen their confidence drop and they have lost all four games so far.

Despite the run there are some small signs of improvement and Argentina were only just beaten by Australia last time out.

Hansen is refusing to look past the Pumas and he hopes a win can see the All Blacks move a step closer to winning the title.

“This is a huge challenge for us,” said Hansen. “It will be the defining moment of the Rugby Championship this year. If we are to have a chance of retaining the title, we have got to win this game. We must try to win it well.

“We caught them unawares last year and we will not enjoy that luxury Saturday. Argentina are a better side this year than last, although I don’t think they have found the game they want to play yet.

“We must pay them a huge amount of respect and the ideal way to do that is to prepare the best we possibly can.”

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