Paris, June 23 (IANS) England vice-captain Gary Cahill on Thursday said the Euro 2016 football tournament was still wide open and his side was putting in a whole-hearted effort to win the title.
“There are certainly teams who have impressed me but I do think it’s wide open,” Cahill was quoted as saying by the Guardian.
“You see, the French, Spanish and Germans who are always there, but is there one team that is going to run away with it? I don’t think there is.”
The 30-year-old also pointed out that most games in the group stage have been neck-and-neck affairs.
“You see how hard teams are having to work, like the French in the second game (against Albania). It was 2-0 and seemed like an easy game, but it was far from an easy game going into the last five minutes (when the score was still 0-0).
“Everyone is fighting to the death so it’s very tough,” the Chelsea defender said.
“We should be pleased with what we are doing, no two ways about it, apart from the obvious, putting the ball in the back of the net. But everything you look for – commitment, playing with confidence, creating chances — is there.”
Cahill also stressed on the fact that the England players have seven days to get fit and ready for Iceland whom they face in the last 16.
“We’ll have had seven days to prepare for it and I think that’s a good thing for us,” said Cahill, who has recovered from a blow to the hip sustained during the game against Slovakia.
“The tournament, the intensity it has been played at, is demanding and seven days gives you time to shake off any niggles and stuff and leave us good to go. We’ve finished second now and we have to deal with that and move forward. We have to go again and show the same mentality that we’ve shown in the first three games.”