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Peters is backing England
10:55am Tuesday 15th October 2013 in Sport
MARTIN PETERS experienced World Cup failure at the hands of Poland as England captain, but does not anticipate Steven Gerrard will suffer the same fate tonight.
England must beat Poland at Wembley to guarantee themselves a place in the World Cup finals next summer, something Peters’ team were unable to do in 1973.
With goalkeeper Jan Tomaszewski in inspired form, a dominant England were left frustrated, drew 1-1 and were denied a place at the 1974 tournament.
‘‘It was a massive disappointment for me personally,’’ Peters, speaking on behalf of William Hill, official England supporter.
‘‘On that night, because Bobby Moore didn’t play, I was captain.
‘‘It was a great honour and I shall never forget it. Not winning meant a lot to me.
‘‘Steven Gerrard has been through so many things. He’s been a great player for so many years and he’s now captain.
‘‘No-one needs to give him any gee-up. He will know exactly what he needs to do. Not only his own game, but making sure the others know what to do as well.’’ Peters, who is 70 next month and won the 1966 World Cup, hopes England can put on a similar performance to last Friday’s second half, when all four goals were scored in a 4-1 defeat of Montenegro.
‘‘I think because they can’t qualify they’ll come out and have a go at us,’’ Peters said of Poland. ‘‘I’d like to see us play the way we played in the second half against Montenegro.
If we can do that, we’ll beat them.’’ Peters, who won 67 caps, has slim recollections of the match 40 years ago.
The 69-year-old said: ‘‘I haven’t watched the game back. I’d love to have watched it and seen what we could’ve done about it.
‘‘We didn’t play that badly on the night, it’s just we couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net.’’ On Tomaszewski, Peters added: ‘‘He played really, really well on the night and saved them.
‘‘In the last five minutes we got an effort on the goal and one of their guys kicked it off the line. If that had gone in, we would’ve won and we would’ve qualified for the World Cup.’’
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