Lampard hopes to acquire winning habit

24 June 2010 08:25
Frank Lampard insists the England squad have not been "living like monks", even though they refused Fabio Capello's offer of a beer on Tuesday.

Lampard is aware that boredom at the England team hotel has been cited as a reason for their disappointing start to the tournament.

But England gave a vastly improved showing in disposing of Slovenia to reach the last 16 courtesy of Jermain Defoe's 23rd-minute goal.

Lampard said: "I think there was an offer of a beer the night before the game, but no-one took it up.

"Listen, a lot has been made about the boredom in the hotel. You can't come away for a month and live like a monk for a month. The manager is aware of that and it is not like that.

"I think sometimes those things (like a beer) are on offer and it is up to you if you take them. You just don't have 10 beers, just one or two."

Lampard believes England should take heart from other teams who have started the World Cup shakily and gone on to win the tournament.

He said: "This performance gives us a lot to build on. You have seen it many a time when teams in tournaments start a bit cagey and then come strong.

"We have to try and follow that model and try and keep improving every game. For everyone who is in it, the tournament starts here because it is knockout.

"How you play in the group doesn't win you anything. It certainly doesn't give you any credit if you then get sent home in the next round.

"Everybody starts here now. It is pure knockout football and it is about performing. When you think you are four games away from doing something very special, that can only focus the mind."

Defoe volleyed home the winning goal from a James Milner cross and that came as no surprise to Lampard after being team-mates at West Ham.

He said: "Jermain is a goalscorer and he has done it everywhere he has been and continues to do it.

"It is not easy to come in (to the side). He hasn't played much. He played a little against Algeria but not much.

"When you come in, people expect goalscorers to score instantly. It doesn't always happen but he did it because he is very sharp and was in the right place."

Source: Team_Talk