• International football

Hart: We know we must perform in Montenegro

ESPN staff
March 23, 2013
Joe Hart knows the importance of England's game with Montenegro © PA Photos

Joe Hart has underlined the importance of England's World Cup qualifying game against Montenegro on Tuesday by telling his team-mates they have got to perform.

The game, which could see Roy Hodgson's side move one point clear at the top of Group H or fall five points behind Montenegro, is a repeat of a Euro 2012 qualifier that saw England throw away a two-goal lead as Wayne Rooney got himself sent off - but Hart is certain there will be no slip-ups in Podgorica this time.

"Tuesday is big, an exciting game for us," Hart said. "We are getting closer to the World Cup finals. We've got to perform. Maybe we could be accused of taking our foot off the pedal as we let a 2-0 advantage slip away last time against them when we needed just a point.

"That is not going to be the case this time. We've got a job on our hands in an intimidating arena, but we've definitely got the capabilities. We go there with the intention of doing well against a good nation.

"Brazil is a long way off, and I'm not going to get carried away thinking about that, but hopefully with a few wins we can start doing that."

Midfielder James Milner is relishing the intimidating atmosphere and challenge that will greet England against Montenegro.

He said: "These are the sort of games you enjoy playing in, with the crowd on your back, and when you are getting a lot of stick. We will know it well from having been there before. It will be tough.

"It is never easy qualifying for a major tournament. We know Montenegro are a good team and they showed that in their qualifying campaign but we are thinking positively."

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