Swain sets the target
By James Marshall in Pachuca
Saturday, 18 June, 2011
Swain in optimistic mood ahead of opening game against Rwanda.
England U17 Assistant Coach Kenny Swain spoke to the media today ahead of the Young Lions' World Cup opening game against Rwanda in Pachuca on Sunday.
Swain insisted that his side will not be taking their opponents likely, after they finished a close second to Burkina Faso in the African qualifying stages.
“Rwanda maybe an unknown quantity, in terms of an African nation, but we will not be taking them likely," explained Swain.
"They finished second in their qualifying group and were narrowly beaten by Burkina Faso, who finished first. We have seen around seven or eight of Rwanda’s fixtures, so we do know they will pose an enormous threat.
“They are a very organised side with some good individual players and if anyone thinks it’s going to be easy, it isn’t.
"We had the fortunate experience last Sunday when we played Ivory Coast. It ended 5-4 to us but it could have easily ended 6-5 one way or the other. However, I have faith in our players to get the result that is needed.”
Swain was also very complementary when asked about his stay in Mexico and insisted that his team will look to put on a show for the people of Pachuca.
“I would like to thank the people of Mexico for their excellent organisation so far, in Mexico City and here in Pachuca we have been treated brilliantly," he added.
"Mexican people absolutely love football and hopefully we can put on a show tomorrow and start the World Cup with a win.”
FIFA confirmed today that the game is almost a sell-out (30,000) at the Estadio Hidalgo. In the opening match of the tournament on Saturday, the hosts Mexico beat Korea DPR 3-1 in front of a crowd of 43,000. In other games, France beat Argentina 3-0 and Congo surprised reigning European champions Holland, by beating them 1-0.