England draw in Ukraine ‘solid’ but not ‘top-class’ admits Liverpool ace

22:39 10 September 2013

England

England's Steven Gerrard acknowledges the crowd after the final whistle. Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

PA Wire

Captain Steven Gerrard felt it was a case of mission accomplished as England kept World Cup qualification in their own hands with a goalless draw in Ukraine.

The point left Roy Hodgson’s men a point clear of both Ukraine and Montenegro at the top of Group H with home games against the Montenegrins and Poland still to come.

“I don’t think it was a top-class performance,” Gerrard told ITV. “Defensively we were solid and the result never looked in doubt.

“Before the game the challenge from the manager was let’s keep it in our hands, let’s make the two final games at Wembley - if we win them then we’re through.”

He added: “We’d like to create more. But sometimes if you’re too risky at places like this you can get undone at the back.

“It’s important to be defensively right first and foremost.”

England have yet to beat any of their direct competitors, their four wins in the group having come against San Marino and Moldova.

But Gerrard said: “We’ve got a better chance of doing that at Wembley. Going away from home to places like this is very difficult. They’re a good side.

“We always knew Ukraine were going to push us all the way. That seems to be the case. It looks like we’re going to have to do it the hard way.”

Gerrard feels England can be happier than Ukraine with the result.

“I think they’ll be disappointed because they know we’re capable of winning our two home games,” he said.

“Hopefully we’ll get a few people back fit which will give us a bit more cutting edge going forward. We’re capable of getting this job done.”

Manager Roy Hodgson conceded it was a fair result and that his side had hardly set pulses racing.

“I don’t think we were that adventurous,” he said. “But it was for them to be adventurous, not us.

“Perhaps we didn’t have quite the quality we needed [up front].

“[But] had we thrown caution to the wind and come away with a 0-1, I don’t think we’d have got any thanks for that.”

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest football news

Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Jamie Vardy of England celebrates with team-mate Danny Rose after scoring his team's second goal  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Danny Rose expects his battle with Ryan Bertrand for the England left-back spot at Euro 2016 to be a close one.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016
England's Jack Wilshere during the warm up before the international friendly match (Owen Humphreys)

Fit-again Jack Wilshere is happier being England’s middle man than a wide boy at Arsenal.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Crystal Palace's Joe Ledley in action (Credit: David Klein/Sportimage via PA Images)

Wales manager Chris Coleman says Joe Ledley faces ‘a big week’ as they assess his fitness aheas of Euro 2016.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Jack Connors made his debut for Dagenham & Redbridge against Colchester United in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy in September 2013 (pic: Dave Simpson/TGSPHOTO)

Ex-Daggers left back says making professional bow was a highlight during time with club

Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Cauley Woodrow of England (R) celebrates his sides seventh goal with team mates  (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

Cauley Woodrow scored twice and had a hand in a few other goals as England Under-21s continued their winning start in the Toulon Tournament with a 7-1 win over Guinea.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Read more
Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport