ENGLAND boss Roy Hodgson claims it is not “impossible” the country could win the World Cup in Brazil in 2014.
Hodgson pointed to Chelsea’s against-the-odds Champions League triumph last season, when they knocked out Barcelona and then beat Bayern Munich on penalties, as evidence that the fancied sides can be beaten.
He told Radio Five: “You could say we are far from being favourites (for the World Cup) so therefore it’s (winning it) not a likelihood. But you’ve got to shy away from ‘impossible’ in football. There are plenty of events that we could point to in footballing terms that you could have said were impossible, but people have done it.
“It wasn’t likely that Chelsea would become champions of Europe, especially having to change their manager in mid-stream but they did.
“That was by beating Barcelona and Bayern Munich, two of the best teams in Europe along the way, so I’d like to keep that dream alive.”
Hodgson took over from Fabio Capello in May following the Italian’s resignation and he led England to the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 in his first major championship at the helm.
The former Fulham boss claimed England have enough quality players to challenge the world’s top sides.
He added: “I hope that I will never been tripped into saying, ‘well, we don’t have enough players or there’s not enough players good enough to play for England’ because that would be a very sad indictment.
“I know there are a lot of foreigners in the league, but there’s plenty of English ones. There were seven Englishmen playing for Manchester United the other day and they’re top of the Premier League.
“I hope I’m not going to be tricked into saying that some time to disguise my disappointment in a defeat or to try and shift the blame to somebody else.”
But Hodgson admitted the huge pressure to succeed at major championships took its toll on the players.
He added: “I would like to see a little bit more kindness sometimes offered to the players, because there’s no doubt there are as aware of anybody we need to win, we need to bring something back to the English public.
“But sometimes if you put so much pressure on these young people there’s no doubt they can be hampered by that rather than encouraged.
“And it’s that delicate balance of having the expectation which propels you forward because you want to succeed and you want to show people you can meet their expectations or freezing a little bit because you feel, ‘whatever I do is never going to be good enough’.”