16th of October 2012 Author: Glo Wood
Steven Gerrard has played down talk of him edging closer to a century of England caps and insists his full focus is on winning Tuesday night's World Cup qualifier against Poland. The Liverpool midfielder will make his 99th England appearance when he features for Roy Hodgson's team in Warsaw. But Gerrard, who made his senior debut against Ukraine back in 2000, insists winning the match against Poland is the most important thing on his mind.
"Every time you put the England shirt on it is a proud moment," said Gerrard. "To get 99 is a fantastic achievement for myself but it will only be a good memory tomorrow night if we get the three points that we came for."
Gerrard, the first choice England captain, was impressed with Wayne Rooney's first competitive match as captain against San Marino on Friday when he bagged a brace in a 5-0 win, but insists he has no intention of giving up the armband lightly. He said: "Wayne did a good job, we got three points, he played well himself, he scored twice, he behaved himself, it was all good. But I'm hoping he will have to wait a while to become full-time captain. I'm really enjoying the role. I had to wait a long time for it to come to me. I want to enjoy it before I pass it over."
Gerrard admits that the young talent emerging in the squad is ensuring he plays at his best to keep his place. "It is great for English football that we are producing these players. They are the players that are keeping the likes of myself on my toes. I know I've got to keep a consistency in my game at this level to stay in the team. All the experienced players are aware of that."
Steven Gerrard is confident England can overcome the recent retirement of former captain John Terry. "I would agree to a certain extent that he is a big miss because he is a fantastic player who has been a fantastic servant to Chelsea and England. But we've all moved on from John's decision because we have to respect it and hopefully we've got other good players who will step in and do a good job as well, Lescott, Cahill and Jagielka. We are not short in that area and hope John is not missed too much."
Here are the odds from Bet365 for Poland vs England:
Poland to win - 3/1
Draw - 12/5
England to win - 10/11
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