Hart inspired by Gerrard
England goalkeeper Joe Hart says captain Steven Gerrard is key to the Three Lions' chances of beating Italy on Sunday.
Gerrard was installed as the permanent skipper following Roy Hodgson's appointment in May and has led from the front in all of England's matches in Poland and Ukraine, inspiring the side from his preferred central midfield role.
The Liverpool man's performances are one of the reasons the Three Lions, 9/1 tournament outright with William Hill, are being talked up as winners of Euro 2012, despite coming into the championships as massive underdogs.
However, before England start thinking about getting to the final they will have to overcome Italy in the last eight, in a game that looks like it will be extremely tight, with William Hill match betting pricing both sides 9/5 while the draw is currently 19/10.
The game in Kiev will be a true clash of cultures as Roy Hodgson's men will be doing all they can to keep a high tempo, while the Azzurri will be looking to contain the Three Lions and play at their own deliberate pace.
Hart believes Gerrard's ability to adapt his game to suite certain styles will be huge in Kiev and has tipped the 32-year-old to inspire his side to victory.
"He's been great," Hart said. "Personally, he expects a lot of me. When a guy like that looks to you to perform, it means a lot.
"When he turns round and says 'you need to do this' it makes me grow as a player."
"He is a model professional, someone who's been there and done it. He just inspires us all to be better," he added.