Euro 2012 update – 15th June

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Focus turns to Group D at Euro 2012 tonight, with co-hosts Ukraine looking to cement their place at the top of the table with victory against France.

England are also in action for the second time, facing Sweden in Kiev after the draw against Les Bleus back on Friday.

Confidence is high in the Three Lions cap after taking a point off one of the pre-tournament favourites, and captain Steven Gerrard knows three points are needed to make the next step at this summer’s tournament.

“With all due respect to Sweden, who are a good team, they are not France, so I think we can be a little bit more bold and a little bit more ambitious, and we’re confident that if we reach the same level of performance, we can get a victory.”

For the Swedes, midfielder Seb Larsson knows everything that the Three Lions will have to offer, having plied his trade at Sunderland last season.

The attacking midfielder is expected to start tonight, and is braced to face a well-organised defensive England unit.

"Well, we expect a very tough game, first of all. You are never going to have an easy game when you come up against an England team who we expect to be very organised as they have been since, you know, for a very long time,” he said.

“Both teams need the points. And you know, as I said earlier, we know what we can do. If we play to our capabilities, then we are capable of beating England."

Ukraine have home-expectations on their shoulders after Friday night’s win, and will be looking to build on the three points against France in Donetsk.

“France have very good players, the team is building up again. They have very young players who are still learning and as I have said previously Ukraine have only won one match against them, which is almost nothing."

For Laurent Blanc, victory will be vital if his French side are to guarantee progression to the next stage of the competition.

The former Manchester United defender singled out Andrey Shevchenko for special mention in his pre-match press conference, but knows there are a number of threats in their attacking arsenal.

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