Steven Gerrard: Drop the pressure

Captain Steven Gerrard feels a sense of perspective can support England's hopes of making a statement at the World Cup.

Last Updated: 21/11/13 at 08:01 Post Comment

Steven Gerrard in action for England against Germany.

Steven Gerrard in action for England against Germany.

The Three Lions were brought back down to Earth following the euphoria surrounding last month's wins over Montenegro and Poland which secured qualification for Brazil when they suffered successive home defeats to Chile and Germany.

England will not be among the top seeds for December's World Cup draw, and so Roy Hodgson's men could find themselves facing a challenge just to progress through to the knockout stages.

However, Liverpool midfielder Gerrard - who played through the pain barrier against Germany after receiving an injection in his knee - believes a more low-key build-up could be just what the squad needs to get themselves into shape ahead of the showpiece tournament in seven months time.

"We are not one of the favourites, we know that," Gerrard said.

"But at the same time you have got to go into the tournament with a bit of belief and confidence, and give it your best shot.

"Of course there are better teams out there than us - you only need to look at the rankings where we are, but we have got to go in there and give it our best shot."

Gerrard added: "I think these results will bring people a little bit down from where they were after Poland and Montenegro, there will be a bit of realism and perspective out there.

"You (will) go into a World Cup where people judge you fairly, and they are not blowing you up to what you're not going to be, and there is not too much pressure and expectation on the players. I am sure that will help us."

By the same token, however, Gerrard sees no reason why when Hodgson has a fully-fit group from which to select his squad ahead of the friendly against Denmark in March - after which he is set to name a provisional 30-man list on May 13 - that England should not be able to make a good account of themselves next summer.

"I think it is important people are not too harsh on us. These games are all about experimenting and trying things," Gerrard said.

"When we get our full team and our full strength back, with the likes of (Danny) Welbeck, (Alex) Oxlade-Chamberlain and (Theo) Walcott, we will have a good team and a team that can go to the World Cup and compete."

The Liverpool midfielder, who could be set to experience his final major tournament in Brazil, feels England can take confidence from the consistency shown in winning their qualification group undefeated.

"It is difficult to judge us after two defeats, everyone is going to be down and give us no chance and no hope, but when you look at the big picture, at our performances in the qualifiers, you can be upbeat," Gerrard said.

"Of course we are disappointed after the two results here, but I think it is important we are not too hard on ourselves and don't write our chances off (at the World Cup).

"The manager has experimented and tried different things over the last two games, so I am sure he has got a better idea of the 23 he wants to take (to Brazil)."


New Sky Bet customers: Claim free £5 bet every week


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

W

ow.. ten paragraphs on West Ham in winners sections.. wow.. Its really Christmas time!!!.. Forever blowing bubbles..

metal
Premier League Winners And Losers

A

couple of wins and everything is OK! Sorry you still haven't got a striker who can consistently goals. Keep searching. I don't think Liverpool will make top four not even Europa League this time around.

larrylawrence
Rodgers still targets top four

I

f he can find the right player? Surely the manager of one of Europe's top clubs has a well-researched short-list and has a good idea of who he wants to bring on-board? If I can find the right player sounds like someone going out on Saturday night on the pull, and the nearer you get to midnight the lower your standards drop.

CamberleyGooner
Wenger to buy centre-half

Footer 365

Sky Bet Championship: Sami Hyypia quits Brighton after six months in charge

Sami Hyypia has left Brighton after the club accepted his resignation as manager.

Rangers AGM: Members of board heckled at fiery AGM held at Ibrox Stadium

Rangers chairman David Somers struggled to make himself heard amid boos and heckles as he addressed the club's AGM.

England's Women postpone friendly with France following World Cup draw

England Women's April friendly against France has been postponed after both nations have been drawn in the same group for the 2015 FIFA World Cup.

Mail Box

Becoming A Proper Fan Again In 2014

Man United fans can thank David Moyes for making them appreciate their club again. We also have mails on Liverpool, Newcastle, another Christmas XI and more...

Wenger Has Made Arsenal Mentally Weak

We have plenty of reaction to yesterday's result, with Mailers sick of Wenger, Mertesacker and Skrtel in particular. Plus why it's not yet time for 'Austin for England'...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property