Hodgson will come up trumps against Ukraine, says Glen Johnson

Last Updated: Saturday, June 16, 2012 - 12:48

Warsaw : Glen Johnson has insisted that Roy Hodgson will continue to make England improve after their comeback victory over Sweden.

The Three Lions defeated Erik Hamren`s side in a thrilling match in Kiev, as the recently-appointed boss opted for two up front to combat their opponents` supposed aerial weaknesses.

And the full-back believes that the team have been going from strength to strength since the 64-year-old took control.

Johnson told reporters: “Roy Hodgson probably came in about four weeks before the tournament started, so it’s not long for any manager to lay down all their laws and how they want to play. But he’s putting his points across relatively quickly and the lads are learning quite quickly.”

The right-back’s Liverpool team-mate Andy Carroll gave England the lead, before Johnson himself levelled matters with an own goal and Olof Mellberg put Sweden ahead shortly after the break.

The match took another turn when Theo Walcott was sent on with 34 minutes remaining and he subsequently scored the equaliser before setting up Danny Welbeck`s improvised winner.

Johnson sympathised with the fans who had to suffer the drama of the game, while praising England’s response: “Sweden played well. At this level every team’s going to cause problems, and they’ve got great players like Ibrahimovic.

“I’m sure it was nerve-wracking for any England fan to watch, but I’m sure everyone will be buzzing now with the three points. As long as you get the three points it doesn’t really matter, as long as you do.”

“Whenever you go behind you want to get the equaliser as quickly as possible, and when we did we knew we had about half an hour, so we knew we could – not relax – but we didn’t have to go gung-ho. We were quite confident.”

“We’ve got a fantastic squad. A lot of the players are playing at the highest level week in, week out for their clubs, and I’ve been seeing them do it in training every day, so it’s not too much of a surprise that the goals were high quality.”

England now need just a point from their final game against Ukraine to secure progression to the quarter-finals.

But the 27-year-old insisted that the team will, nevertheless, go out to win the game in search of topping the group.

“Every game we go into and try to win,” he continued. "Needing a point is better than needing a win, of course. We’ve not seen them (the Ukrainians) yet. First we were concentrating on France, then Sweden, and now obviously in the morning we’ll concentrate on Ukraine.”

“In the morning we’ll have to sit down and watch their videos and take it from there, and I’m sure Roy will come up trumps again."

Wayne Rooney is expected to be named in the starting line-up for Tuesday’s game after serving his two-match suspension and Johnson is sure that the striker will have a positive impact on his return.

He added: “Any time you’ve got players like Wayne Rooney coming back in it’s going to make the side stronger. But we’ve got fantastic players and I’m sure he’ll do good for us.”

Goal.com



First Published: Saturday, June 16, 2012 - 12:48

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