ENGLAND have been handed a fearsome World Cup pool draw for the second successive tournament.

National coach Eddie Jones and his men will be in the same group as France and Argentina for the 2019 tournament in Japan.

At the 2015 World Cup, England were grouped with Australia and Wales and failed to reach the knockout phase.

Ireland and Scotland were pooled together at the draw, which took place in the Kyoto State Guest House, Japan.

Wales, meanwhile, have drawn Australia for the second successive World Cup - Georgia are also in their pool - while there is a shuddering showdown ahead between holders New Zealand and their fellow twice world champions South Africa in Pool B.

Under Jones, England embarked on a long unbeaten run that ended in March with defeat to Ireland, and have won two successive Six Nations titles, so they are likely to start the tournament as group favourites.

France, though, are showing signs of considerable improvement under new head coach Guy Noves, and Argentina are consistent top-drawer performers at World Cup tournaments.

The group is completed by two qualifiers - Americas 1, which will be the United States or Canada, and Oceania 2, which looks set to be Samoa or Fiji.

All qualifying will be finished by the end of next year.

The top two teams from each pool will reach the quarter-finals in 2019.