7 reasons to be confident ahead of England's World Cup clash with Uruguay (Clue: one of them is God)
England fan? Feeling bruised after Saturday's 2-1 World Cup loss? Wondering if it was really worth staying up that late after all? Christian Today presents 7 good reasons to still be full of hope and positivity about England's World Cup chances.
7. We played really well against Italy
Honestly - we did! Alright, we had a few defensive issues, but anyone who witnessed the horrors of the 0-0 draw with Algeria in the last World Cup will recognise that last Saturday night's performance was light years ahead.
6. Raheem Sterling looked World Class
If England have a good World Cup (and we will!), expect to see Christian player Raheem Sterling's name on the shortlist for young player of the tournament. He scared Italy half to death at times last Saturday night; he's potentially the most exciting English talent to appear for a long time, and for a moment we all thought he'd scored the goal of his life after just three minutes...
5. Uruguay look poor
England's next opponents looked out-of-sorts as they were humbled 3-1 by Costa Rica in the first round of matches. They welcome back talisman Luis Suarez for their clash with the Three Lions, but how fit is he?
4. We've got the toughest game out of the way
With two wins from our next two games, we're almost certain to qualify for the next round - and we won't have to play anyone as good as Italy - who were excellent. Plus we don't have to play in the Amazonian heat again - the humidity on Saturday was a huge drain on our pace-and-power-based team.
3. The second round draw is kind
Despite a difficult group, our second round opponents will come from Group C which contains such giants of the game as Greece and Ivory Coast. England should feel confident against any of the teams in that group.
2. The media hasn't got on their backs
For once, the notoriously-mean English media didn't go for the team's collective jugular after a defeat; instead they described the performance as 'brave' (The Sun), and 'vibrant' (The Guardian). Previous England teams have suggested that a negative media have brought the mood in the camp down - this time they're being encouraging... for now.
1. We've got God on our side*
*Well alright, we've got Christian player Daniel Sturridge on our side. And he's really good. When he scored, he wheeled away pointing to heaven, saying 'I love you Jesus, and I praise you father.' And we reckon God is rather pleased when people do things like that. Maybe he might just help us out with our penalties this year...