England striker Wayne Rooney delighted to fire Three Lions to World Cup 2014
England 2-0 Poland
FIFA World Cup 2014
Group H Qualifier
8pm, Tuesday 15 October 2013
Wayne Rooney could not hide his delight after England booked their place at next summer’s World Cup.
The Manchester United striker opened the scoring against Poland on 41 minutes before captain Steven Gerrard confirmed the Three Lions’ place on the plane to Rio two minutes from time.
Speaking exclusively to TheFA.com Rooney said: “We’re delighted. It was a great game, very end-to-end and we showed some great moments with a lot of great attacking play. We fully deserved the victory.
“There was a 20-minute period in the first half where we really went for them and created a lot of chances.
“Their goalkeeper made some great saves and we knew if we didn’t get the goal then it would have been disappointing.
“But thankfully we managed to get the goal and come in at half-time with that lead.
“We started the second half really sloppy to be honest but we got a bit of a foothold on the game again towards the end and thankfully Stevie got the goal that sealed it.
“It was an entertaining match and we had the better moments in the game and deserved the victory.”
Having taken the six points from the matches against Montenegro and Poland, England can now start preparing for next year’s showpiece.
Rooney added: “The last two performances have been really positive. Some of the young players who have come into the squad have been fantastic for us – there is a good blend.
“There’s an excitement around the team and we’ve got a few games now to prepare for the World Cup so hopefully we can do that right and see what happens.
“We have always remained positive. We have had a great belief in ourselves and from the manager.”
But Rooney is refusing to get carried away with the excitement a trip to Brazil will undoubtedly bring.
He said: “It’s obviously a great football nation but we’re not going there as tourists – we’re going there to try and do well and hopefully we can do that.
“It’s a World Cup, it doesn’t matter where it is, it could be taking place anywhere in the world – that’s all the motivation you need to try and do well and qualify for a tournament.”
England’s confirmation of a place at the Finals comes less than two weeks before The Football Association’s 150th birthday.
And Rooney insists that is the perfect way to crown The FA’s landmark anniversary.
He added: “It’s a great way to end the year – that’s all we could ask for.
“We said before the last two matches if we could go into these two home games needing six points we’d be confident we could do that and we’ve proven that to be right. It’s a job well done from everyone.”