The Wallabies are hoping a victory over the Pumas will build some momentum ahead of their final Bledisloe Cup clash with the All Blacks in two weeks.
The backs-to-the-walls Wallabies have one eye on the Pumas and another on the All Blacks as they chase an important momentum booster in their final Rugby Championship outing in Mendoza.
The Wallabies take on Argentina on Saturday (Sunday 9.40am AEDT) believing a strong victory on foreign soil against rugged opposition after a tough build-up will set them up nicely for one last Bledisloe Cup crack this year at the world champion All Blacks.
New Zealand have already secured trans-Tasman bragging rights for an another year after retaining the prized silverware with their 51-20 rout over Australia in Auckland last month.
But having drawn the opening match in Sydney, skipper Michael Hooper admits the Wallabies remain driven to square the series in Brisbane.
Suncorp Stadium is historically the Wallabies’ happiest hunting ground, with their past two clashes with New Zealand at the venue resulting in a win and a draw despite the All Blacks’ dominance of the rivalry over the past decade.
“There’s something to play for each week,” Hooper said after Friday’s captain’s run at Estadio Malvinas Argentinas.
“We’re versing the No.1 team in the world in a couple of weeks. That’s always tough and exciting. They’ve haven’t lost a game yet (in the Rugby Championship).
“Build momentum tomorrow night, build combinations; there’s two potential debutants (back-rower Jake Schatz and hooker Josh Mann-Rea) coming in, so that’s exciting and, furthermore, to draw the series and that would be an improvement.
“One blip there a couple of weeks ago, but (record against New Zealand) is improving year to year and improving at the right time (ahead of the 2015 World Cup).
Hooper conceded the Kurtley Beale saga had been a distraction earlier in the week, but that the Wallabies had moved on and were firmly focused on beating the Pumas.
But he acknowledged winning would be easier said than done and that some soul-searching from the group had been required following last week’s 28-10 capitulation in South Africa.
The Wallabies led into the final 10 minutes, but leaked 20 points as the Springboks exploited the breakdown of Australia’s defence.
“We were well in the hunt last week, so that was disappointing,” he said.
“We were 10 minutes from beating the No.2 team in the world … but you have to take a look at yourselves as a group and see what you can work on.
“So we’ve been honest with each other this week on the field and I think tomorrow will be a reflection of how we’ll try to turn things around.