Steven Gerrard issues England rallying call ahead of World Cup opener
Three Lions skipper believes in his team-mates as they prepare to meet Italy in Manaus
June 14th, 2014
Steven Gerrard will lead out England for this evening’s World Cup opener against the Azzurri, with the Three Lions looking to get off to the best possible start against a team that reached the final of Euro 2012 two years ago.
Gerrard knows this is likely to be his last World Cup and wants his team-mates to leave everything on the pitch against Italy. The Liverpool midfielder feels proud to lead his team-mates on to the pitch and feels as though there is massive potential to do well in Manaus before games against Uruguay and Costa Rica.
“I will say something in the dressing room, towards the end when we are ready to go out, and it will be: ‘Let’s not have any regrets,’” he said. “All the preparation has been done. The squad that’s been picked is very bold and brave. Let’s believe we have all the energy and all the work in the legs and in the tank, so now let’s relax and let it happen. The key is just to not come off the pitch with any regrets and, basically, do what it takes to get that result.
“I will be proud leading this group of players out against Italy. I trust them and I believe in my team-mates, but I will be even prouder if we come home from this tournament with our heads held high knowing we have gone out on to the pitch and given everything we have got for the English public back home. And, looking at the lads and being in and around them, I get the impression they are ready to give everything they have got. It is here now. All the distances and the miles we have covered, the heat preparation, we have done all that. There are no excuses now. It is time to walk the walk.”
Danny Welbeck is expected to line up on the left of an attacking England trident behind Daniel Sturridge despite calls for Raheem Sterling to be selected ahead of the Manchester United man.