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England must be realistic, says Le Tissier
11:00am Friday 18th October 2013 in Sport
Saints legend Matt Le Tissier believes it would represent a success if England reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup.
Roy Hodgson's team earlier this week booked their place at next summer's tournament, in Brazil, after qualifying wins against Montenegro and Poland.
Le Tissier was impressed with much of what he saw in those two games, but he has cautioned against letting expectations get too high.
"Thank goodness England have got to Brazil, but let’s not get carried away," he said, writing in his blog at the Goalden Goals website.
"Brazil and Argentina are my favourites to win the World Cup, with Chile as my outside bet.
"It’s going to be hard for any European team to win this tournament in South America. But, if any team can, it’s got to be Spain, who will be best suited to the conditions.
"As for England, it’s important to keep everyone’s feet on the ground. To be honest, if we got to the quarter-finals that would be a successful campaign for us.
"I don’t think we can expect to go any further, as it’s difficult to imagine we have enough quality to beat the best teams over there.
"And to make it more difficult we are not going to be seeded – we’re up to 10th place in the rankings, but that’s not enough.
"Fair play to Roy Hodgson and the team for qualifying the way they did, with those two wins over Montenegro and Poland.
"I thought Roy was very positive in his team selections and, under quite considerable pressure, his team performed pretty well.
"There are some decent young players coming through and they didn’t let England down. Roy made a point in the build up to the two games that he will have half-an-eye on Euro 2016 when it comes to picking his World Cup squad.
"And I’m encouraged by that because that’s the right thing to do. I don’t think we are in a position where we can go and win the World Cup so why not make ourselves better equipped to win the next tournament.
"You’ve got to plan long-term so it’s encouraging to hear the national coach talking about bringing the young players through and freshening things up."
• Play Matt’s free goal-prediction game now on goaldengoals.co.uk and win £200 in November.
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