Roy Hodgson issues rallying call ahead of crunch World Cup qualifier

Roy Hodgson: 'England expects' on Friday night

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Roy Hodgson says his players know 'England expects' ahead of Friday night's crunch World Cup qualifier with Montenegro.

And the England boss believes his players will deliver the victory that could see them virtually seal a place in Brazil next year if Poland were to beat Ukraine.

Failure to beat Montenegro means a tense night against the Poles at Wembley next Tuesday, but Hodgson believes England will deliver on Friday.

"I trust the players and I believe in them," he said. "I know how determined they are to do the job.

"People do doubt sometimes. They can quote the statistics. We haven't had a marquee result. The one we had was the friendly against Brazil at home, or the draw away, but you can't have a marquee result in a friendly.

"But we are a long way forward compared to how I felt 18 months ago. This is a perfect opportunity to prove that and improve the mood.

"The nation wants us to be in Brazil. They expect us to get them to Brazil. It cannot come quickly enough and we'll be ready for it."

"We are one of the big nations. We are expected to qualify for World Cups and European Championships.

Hodgson: Confident of win

"If that doesn't happen, you'll get criticism. If you're wise, you realise there'll be criticism during qualifying as well. How does anyone stay sane? The training sessions lift me.

"It is two great games and it can be four very good days. That is what I am anticipating."

Tough selection

Hodgson has picked his team, but is keeping his cards close to his chest.

"It's one of the hardest selection weeks," he said. "There are so many senior players available who haven't always been there and the younger ones aren't just here to learn the ropes.

"I've had to give it a lot of thought, but it's clear in my head. I fear I will (break hearts). There is no easy way.

"People are as enthusiastic as you want them to be, but when you tell them they're not in it's hard.

"I take the more experienced players to one side, if I can. You can't do it with the newer members of the squad, who might not have the same aspirations to play, but if you're counting on playing; they are the ones I take aside.

"We're ready for it. We believe in ourselves, trust in each other, have the right determination and motivation. What more can I say to describe where we are?"