Big breath everybody. To quote the old mate Brian Ashby time to calm the farm, accept the flogging we got in Perth, and yes it was a flogging, move on and stop the finger-pointing blame game.
Why is it that we can't ever seem to accept an All Black defeat without it being someone else's fault?
It's never fair, it's never because the other team were actually better than us and it's always because the referee had an absolute shocker ignoring the constant infringing and illegal play from an ever-cheating opposition.
It really is the end of the world when the AB's lose - and let me shout this as loud as I can, I don't want to ever see it change.
The day our attitudes soften on this is the day we lose a huge part of what makes our team the greatest side that plays the game. Deep down we all know we have issues and lots of them.
But that's not ours to solve, that's why we have a team outside the team of expert coaches, selectors, analysts and strategists. And, like the guys who take the field, those on the sideline are still the best in the business - until proven otherwise. Let's also not forget that D-day as far as that's concerned comes in Japan and not a game beforehand.
What we want to see this weekend in Auckland is something that says PROGRESS. We're watching a team that appears to be going backwards, unable to learn the lessons needed, out fought up front, confused on defence and unable to figure out who our best players are and in what positions they should be playing.
No it's not a crisis but yes it's most definitely past the point of being just a blip. And no not even a win over the Wallabies this weekend would answer the many questions we all have nor solve even half the positional problems we face but essential nonetheless in terms of restoring confidence, steeling resolve and reigniting the belief that come the RWC we are still the team to beat. Time to KISS people. That's Keep It Simple Stupid. Isolate this match for exactly what it is.
A one off encounter against our old enemy for a Bledsiloe Cup we simply have to win. Eden Park is the perfect stage for an All Blacks blacklash and chance at redemption.