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Euro 2012: England"s players train in Krakow ahead of France game

Time to get down to business: England's players train in Krakow ahead of opener

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UPDATED:

12:53 GMT, 7 June 2012

England’s players had their first training session in Poland as they prepared for Euro 2012 at their Krakow base.

With the exception of Jermain Defoe, who flew back to England following the death of his father, the remaining 22 players all trained at the Hutnik Stadium behind closed doors.

England open their Euro 2012 account in Donetsk against France on Monday and will hope to have a fully fit squad to choose from.

Ready to go: Phil Jones, Phil Jagielka and Andy Carroll leave the team hotel in Krakow

Ready to go: Phil Jones, Phil Jagielka and Andy Carroll leave the team hotel in Krakow

Talking a good game: England keeper talks to the Press after training

Talking a good game: England keeper talks to the Press after training

Manager Hodgson is desperate for his players to take 'confidence and self-belief' into the tournament.

Sections of the media and many fans have been downbeat about England's chances heading into the tournament and, while Hodgson admits that could ultimately be a positive thing, he wants his players to trust themselves.

When asked whether low expectations helped or hindered the squad, Hodgson told BBC's Football Focus: 'It's only a good thing.

Time to deliver: Theo Walcott

First choice: Glen Johnson

Wave if you are confident: Theo Walcott and Glen Johnson leave their hotel for training

'Football players are under enormous pressure.

'We, as coaches, put them under enormous pressure – we want a lot from them – because we can only succeed when they succeed.

'The nation puts them under pressure.

'I would expect the players to have confidence and self-belief and if they haven't, I'll be saying to them: “Why haven't you got self-belief If I was as good as you, I'd be very, very confident”.'

Young hope: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Danny Welbeck head for training

Young hope: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Danny Welbeck head for training

The main man: Roy Hodgson

Leader: England captain Steven

The leaders: England manager Roy Hodgson and captain Steven Gerrard head for their first training session

Hodgson is relishing the start of England's campaign, which gets under way against France on Monday before further fixtures against Sweden and co-hosts Ukraine, but knows he will not be able to enjoy the tournament unless he is in charge of a winning side.

'I'm looking forward to it,' he said. 'I'm determined to enjoy it as best as we can.
'But of course to really enjoy it, you've got to win.

Ready and waiting: Wayne Rooney will sit out the first two games but trained with the rest of the squad

Ready and waiting: Wayne Rooney will sit out the first two games but trained with the rest of the squad

Keeper: Joe Hart

Back up: Rob Green

Safe hands: Goalkeepers Joe Hart and Rob Green leave the hotel

'There's very little enjoyment to be had in football when you're not winning and we all know that.

'We will try and do the best we can and if there's any allowances that need to be made then the public will make those allowances for us.'

England are certainly among the underdogs heading into Poland and Ukraine but Hodgson is motivated by Denmark's triumph in 1992 – when they competed in the tournament after UEFA decided to exclude Yugoslavia – and Greece's success eight years ago.

Central role: Scott Parker

Key man: Ashley Cole

London United: Tottenham's Scott Parker and Chelsea's Ashley Cole head for training

'Any team can win it,' he added.

'We've seen Denmark win it in '92 when they assembled the players off the beaches because they shouldn't have been there under the normal circumstances.

'We've seen Greece win it against all the odds when no one gave them a prayer at the start of the tournament.

'It's a football match and anything can happen.'