James Milner has warned his England team-mates against letting their standards drop in this week’s EURO 2016 qualifier with San Marino.
The Three Lions host the minnows at Wembley in a game that is seen as a formality for Roy Hodgson’s men as they set about building on their impressive campaign opening win in Switzerland.
San Marino are the joint lowest side in the FIFA rankings, with their abysmal record in competitive and non-competitive games leaving them rooted in 208th place alongside Asian nation, Bhutan.
38-year-old striker Andy Selva is widely seen as the best player the nation have at their disposal, but the best years of his career were spent in the lower divisions of Italian football, while a number of the other players in their squad are semi-professional.
But Milner is still wary of the game, and has called on the England camp to stay focused and nick an early goal to ease the mood:
“We can’t let our standards drop,” he is quoted by the London Evening Standard.
“Everyone knows this is a game we should win and that’s not being disrespectful.
“But when teams come and sit it’s not easy to break them down. The biggest thing is not letting standards drop even against a lesser opposition. We want to keep improving.
“As a team and an individual we all just want to go out there and put on a good performance and keep working on what we’ve been working on and keep improving – that’s the biggest thing – and hopefully the result and the goals will come from that.
“To just go in there and start thinking about the goals, we have be concentrating on the game and how we want to play and if we can do that hopefully the goals will come.”
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