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England v Andorra

Focussed Terry pleased with England's progress

June 10, 2009
By Soccernet staff

Captain John Terry believes England's coolness under pressure is evidence of the progress made under authoritarian coach Fabio Capello.

AllsportEngland skipper Terry in training this week

England will virtually secure their place in the 2010 World Cup finals if they register a seventh successive win in Group Six against Andorra at Wembley on Wednesday evening.

Terry expects Andorra to defend deep and adopt a physical approach but believes an early goal will force the tiny Pyrenees mountain nation to alter their approach.

With team spirit and confidence significantly improved under Capello, Terry insists the current England team will not suffer a crisis of confidence if they fail to make a quick breakthrough, as evidenced last weekend when England struggled against Kazakhstan before eventually running out 4-0 winners.

Terry said: ''We need to start well, certainly better than we did the other night against Kazakhstan. Everyone expects us to win against Andorra which makes it a little bit tougher. If we score early, we can make it easier.

''But we did well the other night by not panicking early on. We kept the ball and stayed patient and that's where we got our joy. Maybe a year or two years ago we'd have tried to force the issue, but we had that inner-confidence that, sooner or later, we'd get a goal. Maybe in the past we'd have panicked.''

Terry added: ''I think collectively over the last year we have been much better, we have been working for each other a lot more. In terms of the atmosphere in the training camp, something is different. There is a different feeling in the air.

''I am not sure what you put that down to. But obviously winning makes people happy and makes it a lot easier.''

One example of the improved atmosphere in the England camp came when injured keeper David James rang Capello and asked to attend Tuesday evening's team dinner.

James was ruled out of the qualifier with Andorra after opting to have a post-season operation on a shoulder injury.

Yet the 38-year-old was still committed enough to ask to share a meal with his team-mates, a request the Italian was happy to oblige.

''I didn't expect David James to ring and ask if he could see us, but it shows the spirit of the squad at the moment,'' said Capello. ''It is really important we create a group.''

Terry knows the importance of maintaining concentration against Andorra; a game that England will be expected to win at a canter.

He said: ''It's one of those games where you have to concentrate, for me and Matty (Upson) to keep talking, instructing players in front of us, making sure they're doing the right thing and that no-one is taking too many touches on the ball.

''It's important we move the ball quickly. The quicker we move it, the quicker we get it into wide areas, the better. We'll benefit by doing that.

''We've got the quality of Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney and David Beckham if he plays.

''We cause a lot of problems these days from wide free-kicks as well and corners. Everyone's been chipping in with their fair amount of goals. If they don't come from open play, we're a threat from set-plays.''