Montenegro manager Branko Brnovic disdainful of 'scared' England
Montenegro manager Branko Brnovic has launched an astonishing attack on England, branding them scared long-ball merchants who foolishly think they have already qualified for the World Cup.
Brnovic, whose team lead England by two points in Group H ahead of Tuesday's clash, has been riled by criticism from some Three Lions players about the patchy state of the pitch at the Podgorica City Stadium.
"I read in the press today statements from some English players about the way the pitch will look. As far as I know, (it is) the English (who) have always favoured long passes," said Brnovic, who took control of the Montenegro team in 2011. "This supports the idea that they're more scared of this game than we are."
England's last trip to the Balkan state ended in disappointment after Wayne Rooney was sent off for kicking Miodrag Dzudovic, earning him a two-match suspension that marred England's Euro 2012 campaign.
Former England captain Alan Shearer warned on Monday that Montenegro could resort to kicking, shoving and scratching the England striker on Tuesday night but Brnovic hit back at claims his team are dirty.
"As far as I know, Rooney was the one who attacked our player last time, not vice-versa," the 45-year-old added. "I know that our strikers (Stevan) Jovetic and (Mirko) Vucinic always suffer strong kicks, but they never complain.
"English legends (like Shearer) are already trying to resort to excuses for what happens tomorrow."
Next up in Brnovic's firing line was the Football Association, who are reported to have pencilled in friendlies against Germany and Argentina for November on the basis that England will win Group H ahead of Montenegro and avoid having to go through a winter play-off.
"Perhaps they organised the friendlies before the start of the qualifiers," he said. "Perhaps after the game tomorrow they will have to cancel them.
"I would say that could be their undoing tomorrow. We are aware that we are playing a very strong national team. But we are playing in our own stadium, we have very good players and England will really have to toil to beat us."
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