Returning England striker Wayne Rooney believes his country has a ‘good opportunity’ to feature in the later stages of Euro 2012.
The Manchester United striker will be recalled to the English line-up on Tuesday for their Group D match against co-host Ukraine after serving a two-match suspension.
And after encouraging first-up results against France (1-1 draw) and Sweden (3-2 win), Rooney is confident they have what it takes to reach the pointy end of the competition.
“Obviously you need a bit of luck as well, but we’ve got a good opportunity,” Rooney said.
“We’ve got the squad and are more organised than we have been as long as I’ve been in the squad.”
If England finish runner-up in their group, there’s a good chance they will face Spain in the quarter-finals.
But Rooney isn’t fazed by the prospect of locking horns with the reigning world and European champions.
“If you want to win tournaments you have to play the best teams and how much of a boost would it be for us if we were to play Spain and beat them? How much confidence would that give us?,” he said.
Rooney was originally suspended for the whole group stage after violent conduct against Montenegro in October but was able to have it reduced to two games and Rooney revealed he feared for his Euro 2012 involvement at one stage.
“When it was a three-game ban I thought I probably wouldn’t be here. I’m happy that I am here,” he said.
When asked if the England players were enjoying themselves more this time around compared to their 2010 World Cup experience Rooney replied: “The players have really settled, they’re happy.
“Two years ago we were a little unsettled in certain ways. But the players are all happy playing together, playing for each other, which I’m sure, everyone can see on the pitch.
“Everyone gets on with each other and there’s a lot of trust between the players and the coaching staff, and everyone’s happy.
“You only have to go to the hotel to see the lads. You’ve got Manchester City players playing snooker with United players, Chelsea players playing Liverpool.
“At the minute, it’s certainly the most comfortable I think the team have been off the pitch since I’ve been in the squad.”
England needs a point to advance to the knockout stages of the tournament whilst Ukraine must achieve a win to reach the quarters.
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