“If we get three points then we’ve qualified. I’m sure it will be difficult and with a plastic pitch, we will not be used to it. But we won’t make excuses if we win or lose – we just need to do our job.”
– Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney is confident that England can seal Euro 2008 qualification with victory in Russia on Wednesday.
The United striker was part of the side that secured a goalless draw in similar circumstances against Turkey just over five years ago, and he is certain that England can overcome the hurdle of Russia’s plastic pitch to book a place at next summer’s finals.
“We know if we get three points then we’ve qualified,” he said. “I’m sure it will be difficult and with a plastic pitch, we will not be used to it. But we won’t make excuses if we win or lose – we just need to do our job.
“It’s a similar situation to when we played Turkey a few years ago to qualify for the last European Championships. We went out there and did a job and I am confident we can do the same again.”
Rooney scored his first competitive England goal since 2004 in Saturday’s 3-0 victory over Estonia at Wembley, and the mercurial striker was predictably elated to be back on target.
“I’m delighted to score at any time, but it has been a long time,” he said. “As a striker, if you don’t score, it does play on your mind a bit, but as long as we kept on winning I didn’t mind too much. I’m delighted to score, but I’m happier with the three points.”