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Gerrard: We had to raise our game

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By: Na 08 Sep 2010 11:00:38

Gerrard: We had to raise our game

Skipper Steven Gerrard believes England had no choice but to lift their game to another level in the aftermath of the "hurt" of World Cup failure.

- Switzerland 1-3 England: Match Report / Player Ratings / The Libero on Wayne Rooney

England are already looking favourites to qualify for Euro 2012 and the 3-1 win over Switzerland on Tuesday brought back memories of the 4-1 victory in Croatia in a World Cup qualifier two years ago. That effectively ensured England would reach South Africa barring no major mishaps and the win against the highly-respected Swiss is being seen by many in the same light.

"I think all the players realised that over in South Africa it wasn't good enough so we needed to re-group," said Gerrard.

"We need to stick together and try and raise the performance levels. I think over the last two games we have certainly done that. I just think we've re-grouped. Everyone was hurt and disappointed by letting the nation down over in South Africa.

"We know we have to put it right but it's important not to get carried away by these two results. It's going to be a long time and a long process before we're really back."

Gerrard was full of praise for Wayne Rooney after he put off-field allegations to one side with his first England goal for 12 months and another excellent performance.

He said: "All the talk in the build-up was about Wayne but we showed a great togetherness and the early goal for Wayne did him the world of good.

"Over the two games he's been fantastic for us. People said the Swiss players might try to wind him up but I wouldn't say that was the case.

"I think they are an honest team and they have a good record, especially at home. People were talking about them being difficult to play against, hard to score against and hard to break down.

"But I thought we tore them apart at times and Wayne played a big part in that."


PA

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