Gerrard: Qualification a must

Steven Gerrard is determined to fire England to Brazil in 2014 and get a chance to eradicate some of his personal demons.

Last Updated: 21/03/13 at 08:54 Post Comment

Steven Gerrard: One last shot at international glory

Steven Gerrard: One last shot at international glory

The Liverpool midfielder is desperate to make up for past failures at big tournaments and have one last shot at becoming a "hero in an England shirt".

The 32-year-old admits he has underperformed for his country in European Championships and World Cups and is keen to prove himself among the world's finest footballers.

And it is that fear of further failure which Gerrard says drives him on the pitch as he prepares for England's World Cup qualifying matches against San Marino and Montenegro.

"It's a must for me to qualify from a personal, selfish point of view. An absolute must," the England skipper told the Daily Mirror.

"On one level, it's about the chance to compete against the best sides and individuals on the planet.

"On another, it's about having that small chance of coming back as heroes in an England shirt, which I have never experienced.

"I have dreamt about it of course. I am sure everyone has. I have got close to it. Penalty shoot-outs in the last eight are close but not close enough.

"I don't feel I have done myself justice at a World Cup. I don't think any England player of this generation can think they have.

"If you spoke to the squad that came back after 1990, they could be satisfied with how close they came and that they did everything they could and had no regrets.

"But I have always come out of the tournaments with England with regrets that we haven't gone to that extra stage, the last four or the last two.

"I take some of the responsibility for that. I have always been honest and said I am part of that squad of 23 players that comes back having underachieved.

"You can't hide behind anyone, you have got to take it on the chin and get on with it."

Gerrard at least believes he is physically prepared to meet the challenge at the next World Cup, having apparently overcome the injury problems that have dogged his career.

"Two or three years ago, the way my body was feeling, I never thought I would make this World Cup," Gerrard said.

"Since I have got my groins sorted out, my form for England in the last 12 months has improved.

"I'm not the type of player that can play with injuries or problems and blank them out. I like to go on to the pitch feeling strong and healthy.

"I'm excited and I feel strong and I feel I can make a contribution if we make it to Brazil and that's the reason I feel like it's a must."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

think that puts all doubts over Benteke's quality to bed. Can he do it after receiving the ball to feet, in the box, totally unmarked, on a warm, sunny afternoon in Swindon? Oh yes he can! This year is definitely Liverpool's year. YNWA.

rationalmanc
WATCH: Benteke's debut screamer

A

ll very well selling all midfield and strikers but unless we bring anyone in that is better than what we had then it will be a terrible transfer window in my view. Sorted out the defense but our midfield and striker options look very light.

bigo
Spurs Halfway To The Perfect Summer

L

ove it when Jose accuses others of being defensive, cynical and playing to win. If I was Wenger, I'd get that quote laminated and framed - surely the biggest compliment he's ever received from Mourinho. You've got him riled Arsene - you're relevant again!

suarez_blind
Jose rues pitch and weather after defeat

Footer 365

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has 'difficult questions'

Arsenal centre-half Per Mertesacker says manager Arsene Wenger has a lot of "difficult questions" to answer.

West Ham forward Enner Valencia ruled out for up to 12 weeks

West Ham forward Enner Valencia has been ruled out for up to 12 weeks with a leg injury.

Jordy Clasie says he'd have rejected move to Man United in order to join Southampton

Jordy Clasie claims he'd have rejected Man United to sign for Southampton - saying it's "better to start lower and finish higher".

Mail Box

There's A Lot Of Anger About TV...

...and how much you have to pay - largely for games you don't actually want to watch. Many of you are forced to go illegal. We also have mails on Chelsea, Angel di Maria and...

Not Just A Friendly. This Had Meaning...

Arsenal fans are very excited about beating Chelsea (don't remind them about last year), while there is criticism for BT and a football fan tired of being screwed by TV...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company