Cattermole praises Swedes
Friday, 26 June, 2009
Lee Cattermole paid tribute to Sweden for their part in a thrilling semi.
After a thrilling 3-3 draw in which England lifted their penalty curse from two years ago, Lee Cattermole paid tribute to Sweden for their part in an extraordinary match.
Despite leading by three goals at the interval, England knew that Sweden would not give in and it was proven by a remarkable comeback that saw the hosts level the scores in eight mad second-half minutes.
"We knew at half-time they were going to come out and maybe we didn't keep the ball as well as we wanted," Cattermole said.
"Their fans were brilliant and the lads were so fit they just kept going. Maybe because we've had a tough season we felt the pace in the second half but again we dug deep and we're glad to come out on top – it shows the character of the team."
The Wigan midfielder stepped up and tucked away his spot kick as England triumphed 5-4, but revealed it was the first he had taken in some time.
"It's the first one I've taken in a professional game," he said. "We've been practising after every training session and I felt lot more comfortable that I thought I was going to be. I tried to shut out the crowd and I felt alright."
With Joe Hart, Gabriel Agbonlahor and Fraizer Campbell all suspended for Monday's final, Cattermole believes that the strength and unity of England's squad will be key if they are to overcome Germany in Malmo.
"The manager's said all along that it's about the 23-man squad and we have to stick together," Cattermole continued. "The team spirit in the camp is absolutely terrific. We've all trained hard and there are lads who are going to get a game and they deserve that because they've been brilliant."
In simple terms, Cattermole and his colleagues came for one aim; to win.
"We came here to win it. The lads have been away for a long time and we want to go home with a medal."