Foden calls for focus

Full-back happy to win "ugly"; admits improvements are needed

Last Updated: 27/02/11 1:55pm

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Foden: try-scorer against France

Foden: try-scorer against France

Sky Bet

Ben Foden has warned England that they must focus on what lies ahead after victory over France kept them on course for an RBS Six Nations Grand Slam.

"It's good to know when put under pressure we can come out the other end"
Ben Foden Quotes of the week

Martin Johnson's side made it three from three so far in this year's championship with a hard-fought 17-9 triumph over Les Bleus on Saturday.

It was Foden who scored the only try of the game at Twickenham, the full-back going over on the left in the opening minutes of the second half.

However the Northampton player insists England can't get ahead of themselves just yet when it comes to a possible Slam, with tough challenges against Scotland and Ireland still to be negotiated.


Asked if the Grand Slam was on, Foden replied: "Yes, but we have to regroup and focus."

"It is going to be a strong Scotland side and if they can beat us at Twickenham it would make their Six Nations.

"We know we have two tough games ahead before we even start thinking about that. There is a lot of homework to be done so hopefully we can be firing when the Scotland game comes.

"With the type of players we have got and the experience, we are capable of winning (the Grand Slam), but the good thing about the competition is that it is full of brilliant teams and if you don't turn up then you'll get turned over."

England's victory over France proved a case of substance over style. The free-flowing, open game that the Twickenham crowd saw against Italy was replaced by a defensive battle, although a multitude of handling errors from both sides didn't help.

Foden believes the performance shows that the team is still very much a work in progress, although he was delighted to "win ugly".

Good sign

"We have a lot of things to work on and we are by no means the finished article but we ground it out. Sometimes it is a good sign when you can win ugly," he added.

"They are a good French team, they came to spoil our game and didn't let us get into a flow but we have developed a back-up plan we can go to and we ground out the victory.

"We like to play wide and it wasn't really working. We were getting cut off in midfield. We wanted to tighten up and get the runners going at nine and 10 and exploit them that way. We started the second half with a bang with that try and it is games like this which define players.

"It's good to know when put under pressure we can come out the other end.

"It's not always about winning games by 30 or 40 points, it's about winning them by two or three. When I was at Sale and we won the Premiership we were winning games just like that."

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