Steven Gerrard believes England will face Germany this evening a much tougher proposition than when the sides met in the World Cup last 16 three and a half years ago.

On that occasion, the Three Lions succumbed to a 4-1 defeat in South Africa and exited the tournament.

However, Gerrard believes England have made strides forward since then and will take on Germany at Wembley tonight an improved outfit.

"I'd say we are better now," the England captain said.

"We are a lot stronger. If we were to meet Germany tomorrow in a World Cup I don't think we'd leave the pitch having been beaten 4-1. There is a good mix of youth and experience in the squad at the moment. We are all moving forward and improving all the time.

"If you look at how they've performed in recent tournaments and where they're ranked, then maybe we are slight underdogs. But if you look at both squads and both starting XIs on Tuesday night I wouldn't say we're huge underdogs, no. Maybe slight."

Germany have re-established themselves as one of international football's powerhouses in recent years; however, Gerrard insists England need not be fearful.

"I have never gone out on to a pitch scared of anyone," he stated.

"I'll openly admit I've gone out and thought: 'Our backs are against it today' when I've come up against Barcelona in the Champions League.

"But I've never gone in scared. I've always gone in with the idea of it being a great opportunity to be the underdog for a change and that the underdog can come out on top.

"Even though it is a friendly it is a game all the players are desperate to win and bounce back from the Chile performance."

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