Woodward: Lancaster needs to toughen England up rather than worrying about World Cup seedings
22:35 GMT, 18 November 2012
Sir Clive Woodward has told England rugby head coach Stuart Lancaster to stop worrying about the World Cup and to start toughening up his players instead.
Lancaster's team have been widely criticised after losing 20-14 to Australia on Saturday and Woodward, the man who led England to World Cup victory in 2003, joined the disparaging voices.
'He's (Lancaster) got to pick a tougher team. International rugby is a tough, tough game,' insisted Woodward, who believes that England are worrying too much about the seedings for the 2015 World Cup.
Toughen them up: Stuart Lancaster (left) needs to stop worrying about World Cup seedings, according to Sir Clive Woodward
'I don't give a monkey's about World Cup seedings. You just have to win your next game. This is a bit of a problem.
'We keep talking about World Cups. The World Cup is three years away. It doesn't matter. You have to talk about winning your game Saturday.
'The mindset of the coach and players has got to be, “If we don't win on Saturday then we lose our jobs on Monday”.'
England must pick up the pieces for South Africa and then New Zealand but Woodward still has grounds for optimism.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek, he added: 'The good thing now is that we (England) have two games where we won't be favourites.
'This will be a big reality check for the team and they have a big chance of bouncing back.'
Lancaster is scheduled to announce his team on Thursday. Fans and pundits left Twickenham questioning England's pack, especially prop Joe Marler, lock Tom Palmer and flanker Tom Johnson, plus wing Charlie Sharples.
Not today: Toby Flood (left) and his team-mates suffered defeat against Australia
England have a number of options including giving starting places to substitutes in lock Joe Launchbury, flanker Tom Wood and prop Mako Vunipola.
Three other players, who turned out for their clubs at the weekend, are also in the mix.
They are Gloucester No 8 Ben Morgan and the London Irish pair of centre Jonathan Joseph and prop Alex Corbisiero.
Woodward was furious that England had ignored a kickable penalty 10 minutes from time which, if successful, would have cut the lead to 20-17 and he questioned whether England had sufficiently discussed what options they had in the course of a match.
Speaking from experience: Sir Clive Woodward led England to World Cup glory in 2003
'The key thing is to get these things in players' heads before you go on to the pitch. So they know what's going to happen at every single situation,' he said.
'There's no point in reviewing the video after the game when you have lost. You have got to review things before you go in and that's the secret of coaching.'
Sir Clive was disappointed that substitute scrum-half Ben Youngs opted to take a tapped penalty rather than the penalty kick at goal in the 70th minute.
He said: 'In the cold light of day the right decision was to kick for goal and to reduce the margin to just three. If you go for the line-out or go for the try you have to score.
'If you don't score then you just give huge momentum back to the defending team.'