Watch: Cheeky Steve Hansen offers journalist loose forward spot – 'I've been watching you'

With the All Blacks down to just four specialist loose forwards for this weekend's clash with Italy in Rome, coach Steve Hansen has gone to drastic recruitment measures, offering jobs to members of the media.

With Liam Squire heading home early with a knee strain, Matt Todd returning to his Japanese club Panasonic Wild Knights, and Sam Cane ruled out until next year with a neck injury, the All Blacks are down to just four specialist loose forwards for their final match of the year.

Only captain Kieran Read, Ardie Savea, Vaea Fifita and newbie Dalton Papali'i remain as specialist options, while Scott Barrett and Patrick Tuipulotu could find themselves as makeshift options.

Asked by NZME's Nigel Yalden, Hansen cheekily suggested that there could be a cap going spare to face Italy.

"We only need four - keep our fingers crossed," he began.

"Otherwise we might have to play you Nige. You've been training good, I've been watching you put the mileage in.

"I've been keeping an eye on it, I think you're a possibility."

Hansen will name his squad to face Italy on Thursday afternoon NZT.

NZ Herald's Nigel Yalden could be a chance at an All Blacks debut, according to Hansen. Source: 1 NEWS

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