France midfielder Samir Nasri revealed he deceived Manchester City team-mate Joe Hart in order to score his equaliser in Monday night's Euro 2012 draw in Donetsk.
Nasri was crowned official UEFA man of the match after the 1-1 draw with England. It was the midfielder's strike just before half-time that earned his side a point after another City man, Joleon Lescott, had put England ahead after 30 minutes.
"When Franck Ribery gave me the ball, the England defence was really low (sitting back)," said Nasri. "I decided to take a shot but Joe Hart knows me from Manchester City and knows that in that situation, I normally open my foot. This time I closed it a little bit so I am happy with how it worked out.
Both teams appeared content to settle for a draw in their opening game of Euro 2012, although Nasri did admit he was dissapointed not to secure the win having seen his side dominate possession for much of the game.
The former Arsenal midfielder also revealed he was pleased with how far France have come since their disastrious 2010 World Cup campaign in South Africa, where their ultimately doomed attempt to make it out of the group stages was derailed by very public in-fighting and discontent under former manager Raymond Domenech.
"We are making a lot of progress, he said. "We have come from nothing in 2010, when we made a lot of mistakes. Today we are more mature. We can do something with this group."
England secured a point in thier first competitive game under new manager Roy Hodgson despite the absence of leading striker Wayne Rooney, who is suspended for their first two games of the tournament, and Nasri believes the Three Lions will be a different proposition altogether when the Manchester United forward makes his return to action against Ukraine on Tuesday.
"That will make a big difference," he said. 'He is a top-class player, someone who can make a difference in a big game. He proves that every single week for Manchester United. It will have a big impact when he comes back for the last game of the group stage."
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