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By ESPN Staff
Sep 11, 2007

'We thrive on pressure', Terry warns Russia

LONDON COLNEY, England, Sept 11 (Reuters) - England captain John Terry warned Group E opponents Russia on Tuesday that his team are capable of winning all four of their remaining qualifying matches because they play best under pressure.

'Russia are a very, very good side and it is going to be a much tougher game than the one against Israel,' he told reporters on Tuesday.

'We did well to beat Israel and we have to do the same again. When the pressure is really on we do rise to it. Right from the start against Israel we set the tempo in the first five or 10 minutes and got right in their faces.'

England beat Israel 3-0 to move up from fourth to third in the table and will go into second place if they can win again on Wednesday at Wembley.

England have 17 points from their eight games. Croatia top the table with 20 points, followed by Russia on 18.

Following Wednesday's match, England are at home against Estonia on Oct. 13, travel to Russia on Oct. 17 and finish their qualifiers against Croatia at Wembley on Nov. 21.

'We have four games to play and we want four wins, and this is another big test for us and we are up for it. The pressure of the vital games certainly does that for us,' added the skipper.

'If we had not got the three points on Saturday, it would have been disastrous but I think we can win the last four games and win the group. The confidence is there.'

England coach Steve McClaren said he was disappointed that Owen Hargreaves was unfit because of a thigh injury and although he would not name his side, said he had decided who would partner Michael Owen up front.

Emile Heskey, recalled to the side for the first time in three years on Saturday, is expected to play in place of Peter Crouch who is eligible after suspension.

'It will be a very hard match, a very different challenge to the Israel game,' McClaren said. 'It is a huge disappointment that Owen (Hargreaves) is out, but there is an air of confidence about the squad and we have the quality to win the game.'