Last updated : 13 June 2004 By Editor

“I read last week that Pires thinks they're going to beat us 3-1. They're just ultra-confident. That's the way they feel.

Asked if the England team's motivation was to bring the champions down to earth, he said: “Yeah, it is, but it would be nice to say that after the game rather than before it.

“To say that 'wound us up'. A few of their players have had a lot to say about our defence, but that's just the way it comes across.

“At the end of the day, all that matters is what's happening out on the pitch.”

“I've played on the left a lot of times for United, it's a position I've enjoyed playing. It gives you a bit of extra freedom, because you know there always two in the middle and it allows you to roam a bit and hopefully get in the box.

“The midfield is working well now – too much was made of the formation, and we all feel comfortable with what we are being asked to do.

“It's the most confident and the best squad I've been in. It's full of young, very good players.

“He's (Sven) always spoken well about me and he's never left me out, so I always knew he had the confidence in me. Hopefully I can pay him back sooner or later by scoring some goals.

“People have said to me before that I'm not someone who relies on confidence, but I do. If you haven't scored for a while it definitely plays on your mind.

“It happened at United a couple of years ago, when I didn't score my first goal until November. It does affect you, as you saw against Iceland on Saturday.

“I was six yards out and should have scored. I still want to get into the box and score goals, I've shown that in the last couple of games. I just need to finish it off.”