Jacques Brunel has been in charge of Italy since 2011
Italy coach Jacques Brunel has urged his players to show an improved desire this autumn as they look to consign a disappointing year to the history books.
The Azzurri finished rock bottom of the 2014 RBS 6 Nations and followed that up with a winless run in their Pacific tour, falling to defeats against Fiji, Japan and Samoa.
And if 2013 was a year of progress - beating France and Ireland along the way - Brunel wants a return to that form starting with the visit of Samoa on November 8.
"We took a step backwards last year and lost matches that we could have and should have won," Brunel told AFP.
"We lacked spirit, but this is something we've worked on-our hunger for victory."
Brunel has refreshed his squad for the autumn, including Samuela Vunisa, Simone Ragusi and New-Zealand born Kelly Haimona for the first time.
Utility back Haimona said: "I still see myself as a Maori boy from a small town in New Zealand, so to come this far having done all the hard work to get into the Italy squad makes it all the more special."
Andrew Trimble may have just been appointed Ulster's new skipper for their domestic campaign, but the Ireland star admits his thoughts are already turning towards taking down the All Blacks in the autumn.