Everton star was involved in Three Lions 4-0 win over Moldova
LEIGHTON BAINES is confident England have enough quality to ensure they book a place at next summer’s World Cup in Brazil.
The Everton defender was a second half substitute on Friday night as the national team went top of qualifying Group H with a comfortable 4-0 win over Moldova at Wembley.
Baines, who won his 19th cap in the win, says England head for Kiev in confident mood for tomorrow night’s crucial match with Ukraine.
England lead the way ahead of Montenegro by goal difference having played a game less. Ukraine have played the same number of times as England and are a point behind.
Victory will leave Roy Hodgson’s men in a strong position with two qualifying games remaining next month and Baines has labelled tomorrow evening’s match in the Olympic Stadium (7.45pm) as “huge”.
“This is the start of a big season in international football,” Baines said.
“There are some more massive games coming up for us to try and qualify for the World Cup.
“It’s off to Kiev tomorrow night where we’ve got a huge match in Ukraine.
“They’re all big games but if we can get a couple of wins in these games then we’ll be in a good position.
“The win (against Moldova) has given us confidence going over to Ukraine.
“We always believe in ourselves and the quality in the squad is great.
“Sometimes you look around and see what the lads are doing in training and realise you are with top quality players. Over the last few years we’ve introduced a number of young players into the squad so the future looks good.”
Baines hopes the immediate future is one where England spend this summer in Brazil.
England drew 2-2 with Brazil in a friendly at the beginning of June with Baines playing the first half an hour in the Maracana.
The Blues left-back says the experience of being in South America has only served to whet the appetite for a longer stay next year.
“Going out there was great,” said the 28-year-old. “Just playing in Brazil was a great occasion and it’s something I’ll always look back on.
“We weren’t there very long but we tried to take in as much of the experiences on offer in Rio as we could, such as having a walk on Copacabana Beach and visiting the Christ the Redeemer statue."