Phil Jagielka relishing 'high stakes' friendly against Brazil
England play the South Americans on Wednesday
Monday 04 February 2013
Phil Jagielka is calling for England to repeat their heroics against Spain when Brazil head to Wembley for Wednesday's glamour friendly.
Jagielka helped shut out the world and European champions in November 2011, a result that proved to be one of the highlights of Fabio Capello's reign.
Now, the five-times World Cup winners are on their way, with Jagielka eager to claim another major scalp.
Speaking at a Vauxhall dealership in Warrington during an appearance for the England lead sponsor, Jagielka said: "This is a high stakes game.
"That Spain game wasn't make or break but because we won and kept a clean sheet it turned into a massive positive.
"It is a similar situation now. Whether I get to play, or someone else, it is about gaining experience from a great test."
The test is certainly going to be a unique one.
With Ronaldinho and Neymar both named in the first squad of Luiz Felipe Scolari's second spell as Brazil coach, England will be facing forwards at either end of football's experience spectrum.
Now 32 and playing back home for Atletico Mineiro, Ronaldinho needs no introduction.
Neymar, who turns 21 on Tuesday, is on the other hand rather an enigma.
Other than his admittedly impressive performances from Brazil in their silver-medal-winning campaign at London 2012, most observers in this country only know of him through word of mouth, or clips on You Tube, which tend to extenuate the positive.
Not that there will be any escape for Jagielka and his defensive colleagues when it comes to analysing the youngster.
"I don't know a lot about Neymar," Jagielka said.
"We don't see a lot of footage. He plays in Brazil so it is tough for us.
"But we have video analysis people when we meet up with England and they will have plenty of footage for us to review.
"They will pick out his good points and bad ones. I am sure the good points will be going on for hours."
England's hopes were hit yesterday as Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick and Jermain Defoe pulled out of the game through injury.
A statement on the FA's official website said Carrick was suffering from a hip injury and will not join Roy Hodgson's squad ahead of the match at Wembley.
Tottenham announced after yesterday's 1-0 win at West Brom that striker Defoe would miss the fixture with an ankle problem sustained at the Hawthorns.
Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas said Defoe would be sent for a scan to determine how bad the damage is.
"He rolled his ankle," said the Portuguese. "He will have to have a scan to reveal the extent of the injury.
"Hopefully there is not a lot of ligament damage. If there is, he could be out for two to three weeks."
Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge is also a doubt for England after sustaining a thigh injury in yesterday's 2-2 draw at Manchester City.
Arsenal strengthened their grip on a top-four finish with a straightforward 3-0 win over Hull City.
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