Crouch glad to open England account at Anfield

Liverpool forward Peter Crouch is glad to have made some steps towards stopping the idiotic booing that greeted previous England international appearances for him. Crouch scored the equaliser and generally played his usual all-round great game for his country at Anfield on Wednesday night, and at last was cheered in an England home game. He says that he expected a good reception at Anfield, but it still felt good: “It feels good to turn that reaction around. The fans were great during the Argentina game and they were always going to be good to me at Anfield. The Liverpool fans have been great since I came to the club.”

Crouch took fewer appearances to score for England than he did for Liverpool, meaning the press and pundits will have to be nicer to him – for now anyway.  Crouch was made even happier with his goal bearing in mind where he was when he scored it: “It is great to score my first goal for England and even more special to do it at Anfield. The manager has never doubted me. Maybe other people did but he had every confidence in me and proved it by picking me for squads. I have a lot to thank him for.”

Crouch didn’t feel like he was a visitor to the England dressing room. He says he feels right at home with the squad: “I feel I belong in that dressing room. I would not be here if I did not believe I was good enough. If I perform well for my club I can look forward to the World Cup like everyone else in that dressing room.”

Going to Germany is the main thing for Crouch – he’s not expecting to start unless something happens to those ahead of him in the queue, or if a game isn’t going England’s way: “You always want to start games but I am realistic. Michael Owen and Wayne Rooney are top-class players and they’re going to start ahead of me. If I can play some role, it is great. It worked out well against Uruguay. I came off the bench and scored and we won the game. I want to be part of the England set-up and, if that’s my role, that’s fine.”