Tough Swiss in Milner's sights
- 06 September 2010 13:40
- Posted by Peter Ferguson
James Milner has urged his England team-mates to kick on from their Wembley triumph over Bulgaria in tomorrow night's testing European Championship qualifier against Switzerland.
Milner was one of four City stars who figured in a resounding 4-0 victory - alongside Joe Hart, Gareth Barry and scoring substitute Adam Johnson - that he hopes has set the benchmark for future performances.
But he warns that the improved Swiss - who toppled eventual winners Spain in their World Cup group this summer - represent a difficult obstacle to England's ambitions in Basle.
Milner said: "We went through qualification for the World Cup very well, and hopefully we can do the same for the European Championships.
"There is a long way to go and it's a tough group, but we've made a good start and now it's about keeping it going, keeping improving and moving forward as a team.
"Switzerland had a very good result in the summer in the World Cup, so we know they are a good team and it is going to be tough.
"But every away game in qualification is hard. You go to some tough places with hostile atmospheres and everyone raises their game against England.
"It's up to everyone to take the form they showed at Wembley out there. To get the first game out of the way with the result we did was handy, now it's important we kick on and get another win."
Milner was given left-sided duties by England manager Fabio Capello as skipper Stevie Gerrard patrolled the central position they both prefer but he added: "Whatever is best for the team is great with a result tlike that.
"A player of Steven Gerrard's quality just wants to be wherever he can influence the game most, and he and Gareth Barry were great in the middle. Friday was a good performance.
"It was important to keep a clean sheet. We played pretty well - at 1-0 up they had a couple of chances, but after that we kicked on and finished the job, and we could have had a few more.
"So we're coming off the back of a good result. Now it's about preparing well, recovering from the last one, looking at what we did well, and looking at what we need to improve. We need to concentrate on that."