sport

Barritt: All Blacks can be beaten

Brad Barritt insists no team is invincible and has vowed England will not be intimidated by New Zealand on Saturday.

The All Blacks have not lost an autumn international in a decade and the world champions are on a remarkable 20-match unbeaten record, dating back to August 2011.

England, meanwhile, are desperate to avenge their home defeats to Australia and South Africa - and are determined to view a game against New Zealand as the best opportunity to do so.

"There is no beating about the bush, they are the best team in the world - but no team is invincible," said the Saracens centre.

"We don't put any player on a pedestal. We won't go in there thinking they are Gods on a rugby field.

"There's a huge amount of belief in our team. There is something special about each person.

"In order to be here you're a natural born winner and you'll do anything to get to that position to win.

"We're against an opponent that's been unbeaten over the past two years but this is a huge opportunity for us.

"At the end of the day they're just humans with two legs and two arms, albeit performing to the optimum level.

"We need to raise our game and really impose what we can on them and not give them any status that's going to help them."

England's assistant coach Andy Farrell was in this same position many a time as a rugby league player with Great Britain, coming up against the great Australia sides of the 1990s.

Farrell's understands the value of self-belief but he also stressed that England's confidence is deeper than just some bullish talk to the media.

Although England were beaten 16-15 by South Africa, the squad emerged from the review sessions at their Surrey base this week convinced they were the better team.

"We have a champion's attitude that we can knock over champions along the way," Farrell said.

"We did it once or twice (for Great Britain against the Kangaroos).

"New Zealand are as good as it gets at the minute and they are playing some outstanding stuff. We have got it in us to take our game to them.

"The reality of the South Africa game was that we were the best team.

"We were piling on the pressure and making inroads. Sometimes you win these tight games, sometimes you lose them.

"If we produce the same intensity and the same intent you would like to think you will be in any type of Test match.

"The mood in the camp is great. There are no hard feelings, there is no sulking. The boys realise what they did well and what they need to up this week and they are hard at it."

To help explode an aura that might surround the All Blacks, England head coach Stuart Lancaster has highlighted recent occasions when New Zealand have been vulnerable.

They scraped past France in the World Cup final, they were pushed close by Ireland in the second Test of the summer series and they were held to an 18-18 draw by Australia in Brisbane last month.

England have studied those matches and also the All Blacks' comprehensive victories over Scotland and Wales this month, which were a lesson in how not to defend against them.

"They're undoubtedly the best attacking team at the moment," said Barritt, England's defence captain.

"We take huge pride in what we do on defence. I think Scotland and Wales hung off them and allow them their moves.

"We have a different philosophy - getting off the line and putting pressure on teams.

"You have to do everything as clinically as you can, all the time. There's no reason why we can't pull off an upset."