Roy Hodgson has urged England to leave Kiev’s Olympic Stadium with no regrets after their Euro 2012 quarter-final with Italy on Sunday.
Hodgson is aiming to create a piece of history by guiding the Three Lions to their first European Championship semi-final since 1996. Away from Wembley, however, England have not beaten a major nation in the knockout stages of a major tournament, and Hodgson has instructed his side to dig deep.
"Someone is going to lose and whoever loses is going to be very sad," said Hodgson. "We can't do anything to change that. What we can do is make certain we have no regrets at the end of the game.
“We don’t want anyone to think we could have done better or worked harder or been more together as a team. Our players know there is a lot of pressure on them and there is a lot of pressure on the Italians as well.
For the second consecutive game, England completed preparations at their Krakow base before flying into Ukraine for a brief public walk on to the pitch prior to Sunday’s showdown.
With no late injury scares, Hodgson is set to name the same side that started against Ukraine on Tuesday, meaning Andy Carroll will continue as deputy to Danny Welbeck.
“I am not only relishing this challenge but also relishing the work with the players and the chance to coach players of such great ability with such a high level of skill and experience.
“And the fact now we are going into a game that would give us a chance of putting one very unpleasant statistic away - that we haven’t beaten a major sort of team in the knockout part of a tournament finals,” Hodgson said.