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Gerrard: We will learn from pain

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23 Jun 2014 12:01:52

Gerrard: We will learn from pain

Steven Gerrard thinks England will perform much better at Euro 2016 because of their bruising experience in Brazil.

England touched down in Belo Horizonte on Monday ahead of their final Group D match - a dead rubber - against Costa Rica.

The city played host to one of England's most embarrassing World Cup defeats 64 years ago when an unheralded United States team beat a Walter Winterbottom side that included the likes of Sir Tom Finney, Sir Alf Ramsey and Billy Wright.

England could be set for another embarrassment if recent results are anything to go by.

Unlike in 1950, England are already out of the World Cup thanks to successive defeats against Italy and Uruguay.

But despite the sorry showing in South America, Gerrard believes the 17 England players in Brazil who had never been to a World Cup before will be stronger for the experience.

"The World Cup is a level where you don't forget your experiences in two weeks, four weeks, a couple of months - they live with you for a long time," said the England captain, who will start on the bench in Belo Horizonte.

"But you have to accept that and try and move forward so that if you're picked for another tournament, your experiences are better.

"I do think the youngsters here have that character.

"I've said how talented they are.

"They do the right things in and around training, and they want to stay at this level for a long time.

"It will be better in two years because of the standard of players we have here."

Gary Lineker joined the long list of pundits to criticise England on Sunday, describing the squad's campaign as nothing short of a "humiliation."

England's second-highest scorer said he believed Hodgson got his tactics completely wrong in Brazil and he also criticised Gerrard for a supposed lack of organisational skills.

Even before a ball was kicked, England faced criticism from outside the camp, with 66-cap midfielder Paul Scholes regularly pointing out what he believed were deficiencies within the set-up.

Gerrard accepts the team will always be subject to criticism, but he admits the comments of Scholes and other ex-professionals do have an impact.

"In this position as captain you have to accept there are opinions out there," he said.

"I am not sitting here telling everyone they have to stop. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

"But sometimes it is frustrating when you are sat here and there is someone who you have played with and they have been in your position, they have suffered with you and they know what it's like to be down and they pile a bit more misery on you."


PA

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