Steven Gerrard envisages two years of hard work ahead if England are to transform their World Cup frustration this summer into tangible success at the 2016 European Championship.
The Three Lions were eliminated from the tournament in Brazil after just two matches in Group D, suffering narrow reverses against Italy and then Uruguay.
Liverpool's skipper has yet to make or announce a decision on his international future beyond the current competition, and plans to consider his next step following time away.
Whatever happens on a personal level, Gerrard has insisted that a considerable effort now awaits manager Roy Hodgson and the young talents at his disposal.
He told BBC Sport: "The easy thing for me to do is to say everything is great, it's going to be fine in two years and we're going to go on and win the Euros. It's not as easy as that.
"You've got to understand that this level is very cruel; there are some unbelievably gifted individuals playing for other countries, there are some strong teams out there. It's tough to succeed at this level.
"I hope that we can improve and do an awful lot better in two years but we'll have to wait and see. There's a lot of hard work to be done if we're to succeed in two years."