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Manchester United trio must improve if England are to deliver Euro fans expectations

If Roy Hodgson's side are to beat Italy on Sunday in the quarter finals the Manchester United strike force will need to improve.

England ran their luck against a Ukraine side that were thought on world ranking to be outsiders. Another goal not given and with the Ukraine side on top and it could have sent us home with no punters predicting the France result.

While as a unit, defensively we can compete against the best but against the better sides Wayne Rooney, Ashley Young and Danny Welbeck will need to be more clinical to relieve pressure.

Boss Hodgson admits England have done better than expected by qualifying top of Group D at Euro 2012.

"Ukraine have very good players, France were undefeated in 23 games, and then there's Sweden who ended that run. But we deserve it."

"In tournament football you need good fortune, and England have had that. If we hadn't, another team would have. Ukraine were so much in control of the game, but they didn't have an end product."

By winning Group D, England avoided world and European champions Spain in the quarter-finals and will play Group C runners-up Italy instead in Kiev on Sunday.

"I'd have been quite happy to play the Spanish, but I'd rather miss them because they are the favourites alongside Germany," added Hodgson. "I think this team of ours would have given Spain a pretty good run for their money.

"The good thing is that we're there and we're not travelling home. There was not one person in our group who wanted to be on that plane tomorrow."

While Steven Gerrard was captain fantastic last night his midfield partner Scott Parker looked as though his tank was half full, Hodgson has tactically got things right with inspired substitutions but he may have to freshen up his team with games to come. The extra day off could be critical with Germany and Spain possible obstacles after Italy should we win the quarter final.

SD

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