Young ready to shine for England

The 26-year-old said that the Three Lions are in a confident mood ahead of the clash with les Bleus, while stressing his belief that UEFA will sort out any racism issues.
Ashley Young believes that morale is high in the England camp ahead of the team's Euro 2012 opener against France, adding that he is looking to continue his recent goalscoring form.

Roy Hodgson's men face Les Bleus on Monday in the first round of Group D games, after winning both of their last two warmup matches 1-0 with the 26-year-old likely to be deployed as a second striker in the absence of the suspended Wayne Rooney.

Young is looking to rise to the challenge of filling in for the striker, while revealing that the team is feeling good about its chances against France.

"I don't mind that, I thrive on the pressure," he told Sky Sports. "I'm looking forward to the game coming up on Monday. I scored against Norway and set up [Welbeck] against Belgium, which is always nice. Hopefully if I'm selected in the team on Monday then I can do that again.

"Everybody in the squad is feeling confident ahead of that game and I'm sure if we can go out there and put in the displays that we've shown in the last couple of games then we'll get a good result."

Laurent Blanc's men are favorites to win the group, with England expected to also qualify in second place but Young insisted the English are looking for victory.

"We want to win," he continued. "We go out in every game to win. We're going to go out there to get the three points and that's exactly what we're thinking about, we're not thinking about drawing the game.
"We don't come into a competition not thinking that [we can] win the competition."

The winger conceded that the unavailability of club teammate Rooney is a blow for the team, but said that the forward is dealing with the situation.

"He has handled it very well," Young said. "He's a world class player, [we're] disappointed not to have him for the first two games but we've got to get on with it. He's been in the squad keeping everyone happy, everyone has been getting along. That's why it's important to have him around even though he's not involved in the two games."

Another one of Young's United teammates has been the subject of controversy in recent weeks, with Rio Ferdinand omitted from the squad, but the winger does not think this is the end of the defender's international career.

"He's said that he's not going to retire, he's a fantastic player. I've played with him this season and for England in previous [years]. He's a great player to play alongside," he said.

Meanwhile, Theo Walcott's family has chosen not to travel to the competition due to fears of racism and Young admitted he is unsure how the England players would react should they experience the issue.

"Of course it's disappointing but it's down to UEFA to deal with," he stressed. "Hopefully it doesn't happen again.

"If it was to happen I'm not to sure what would happen, but like I say it's UEFA who is going to deal with that side of things."

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