Steve Borthwick insists England are ready to defy gloomy predictions for their World Cup by delivering a reaction against Argentina in their pivotal opener.
The Pumas are in the rare position of being assigned favourites for the main event of pool D on Saturday (Sunday AEST), based on their strong year under the guidance of Australian Michael Cheika and their 30-29 victory at Twickenham in November.
England, meanwhile, have gone into freefall following a run of five defeats in six Tests that no longer makes qualification for the knockout phase appear to be the formality it once was.
Borthwick, who has named Alex Mitchell at halfback and Tom Curry at openside for the Marseille showdown, insists the low expectations have sent ripples of indignation through the squad.
"I sense there is a feeling among the players they've been written off too early. People have called time on them a bit too early," England's head coach said.
"I sense the frustration about what people have been saying about them and right now I have an expectation that they will go and perform with the quality that they have.
"I sense from them that there's a real determination to go and put their best performances on the park.
"There is a lot of class in this squad. The players have a hell of a lot more to go. They can't wait to get stuck in on Saturday night.
"Our job is put in a performance that this team is capable of and I know these players are capable of. I know these players are determined to deliver on Saturday night. That's our job now."
Offering hope to England supporters is the selection of Mitchell ahead of Danny Care and Ben Youngs, with the 26-year-old a more dynamic presence than his veteran rivals for the jersey.
Remarkably, he starts in England's biggest game since the 2019 World Cup final despite being overlooked for their original 33-man squad, with an injury to Jack van Poortvliet offering his route to France.
Curry's influence on the team is evident through his promotion to the back row despite having missed the entire build-up campaign because of an ankle injury sustained in training.
"He's in fantastic physical condition; he missed a period of training but his movement is exceptional," said Borthwick.