World Cup qualifier: England captain Steven Gerrard happy with draw in Ukraine
Steven Gerrard is happy England have World Cup qualification in their own hands after their goalless draw in Ukraine.
Last Updated: 11/09/13 11:06am
England battled to a point in Kiev to leave Roy Hodgson's men a point clear of both Ukraine and Montenegro at the top of Group H with home games against the latter and Poland still to come.
England skipper Gerrard feels they got their tactics spot-on as they kept Ukraine at bay to take a step closer to next summer's World Cup finals in Brazil.
"I don't think it was a top-class performance," Gerrard said. "Defensively we were solid and the result never looked in doubt.
"Before the game the challenge from the manager was let's keep it in our hands, let's make the two final games at Wembley - if we win them then we're through."
He added: "We'd like to create more. But sometimes if you're too risky at places like this you can get undone at the back.
"It's important to be defensively right first and foremost."
England have yet to beat any of their direct competitors, their four wins in the group having come against San Marino and Moldova, but Gerrard is not worried about that record knowing wins at home to Montenegro and Poland next month will secure their qualification.
"We've got a better chance of doing that at Wembley," added Gerrard. "Going away from home to places like this is very difficult. They're a good side.
"We always knew Ukraine were going to push us all the way. That seems to be the case. It looks like we're going to have to do it the hard way."
Gerrard feels England can be happier than Ukraine with the result.
"I think they'll be disappointed because they know we're capable of winning our two home games," he said.
"Hopefully we'll get a few people back fit which will give us a bit more cutting edge going forward. We're capable of getting this job done."
Phil Jagielka was also more than happy to see England taking a point.
"We would have loved to have got a win but we are on top and it is still in our hands with two home games," he said.
"We knew it was going to be tough and they made life difficult and we knew we would come under a bit of pressure but it nice to take clean sheet and move forward."