Gerrard keen to lead England to winning finale

08 October 2013 09:00

Steven Gerrard has no wish to repeat the worst experience of his England career next week.

Gerrard leads England into the World Cup qualifiers against Montenegro and Poland knowing back-to-back Wembley victories will sweep Roy Hodgson's men into next summer's World Cup Finals.

Four points would be enough if Ukraine fail to overcome Poland in Kiev on Friday.

But anything less and England will find themselves in the play-offs, or even worse, eliminated altogether.

And it is that spectre of missing out completely, as they did at Euro 2008, Gerrard hopes will drive his team-mates on to glory.

Speaking on behalf of official England partners William Hill, Gerrard said: "It was a very tough time in 2008.

"It was the lowest experience I have ever had as an England player and I don't want it to happen again.

"It was a horrible situation to be in. Hopefully the hurt and the pain from that time will help drive us all on."

In the tightest of groups, England do at least remain in charge of their own destiny.

Yet, as history shows, that tends to be no guarantee of a stress-free end to qualification.

Source: PA