London: England manager Roy Hodgson has said that winning back the support of England fans was his biggest success of the Euro 2012.
Hodgson explained that when he took over the team in May, confidence and belief in the national side was at rock bottom, but being able to reach the quarter-finals without losing a match, except on penalties against Italy, has got Three Lions fans singing again.
“We were concerned going into the tournament that we didn’t have the fans dreaming about success. So what’s been a major positive has been to see how positive people have been,” a newspaper quoted Hodgson, as saying.
“We have consistently broken television viewing figures, first it was 18million, then 19m and now 23m. The fact 23m tuned in. OK, they’ve had their hearts broken, but it’s nice to know they were that interested. We can’t guarantee we can make those dreams come true. All we can do is try,” he added.
The former West Brom boss said he wanted to maintain the momentum from the Euros, while he wants a marked improvement in the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign, he is not ready to discard the 30-somethings like John Terry, Ashley Cole and Steven Gerrard.
“This is just a start for me. But I’ll not be dismissing the people who have served me well during my short time as national team manager,” he said.