England fly out to Portugal to begin World Cup preparations

The Three Lions have jetted off to their training camp ahead of friendlies with Peru, Ecuador and Honduras, with the summer showpiece in Brazil looming large on the horizon
England have flown out to Portugal to begin their preparations for this summer's World Cup in Brazil.

The Three Lions stars will be put through their paces by Roy Hodgson ahead of the summer showpiece, with the former Liverpool manager attempting to hone the gameplan needed to defeat group opponents Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica.

And such is Hodgson's attention to detail, the England players will sometimes train in hats and gloves as they look to acclimatise to the conditions expected in Manaus when they face the Azzurri in the group opener.

England's entire backroom staff will be present in Portugal – where Wayne Rooney is already training – and the group will spend a week together before returning home to prepare for a Wembley friendly with Peru.

Ahead of the trip, Hodgson outlined the importance of the training camp.

"All of us are going to Brazil with one burning ambition," he told reporters. "We've worked hard to get there and want to come home with people saying 'well done'.

"But there's only one way for that to happen, by preparing properly, competing in the best shape and getting our minds right. That doesn't mean locking people up in their rooms or making them go through four-hour meetings.

"They're human beings and we want them to perform as well as they can perform.

"We have the hope, dream and ambition. But to do well, we have to play well, play better than the opponents, for all the players to live up to their reputations. They deserve those big reputations. It's up to them to live up to them and up to us as a coaching team to ensure they're capable of doing that."

After their clash with Peru, England will jet off to Miami on June 1 and will play friendlies against Ecuador and Honduras on June 4 and 7 respectively. They will then fly on to Brazil on June 8, before facing Italy six days later.

England will base themselves at the five-star Royal Tulip Hotel whilst in Brazil and Steven Gerrard has already outlined his desire to stay there for the duration of the tournament, with the Liverpool skipper claiming "there is no harm in dreaming" that he can bring the trophy back to Wembley after the July 13 final at the Maracana.