England goalkeeper Robert Green insists he has the mental strength to bounce back from his blunder that gifted the USA an equaliser in the 1-1 Group C opener in Rustenburg.
Steven Gerrard scored after just four minutes to give England the perfect start but Green allowed Clint Dempsey’s tame shot to slip through his fingers.
But Green, who who edeemed himself somewhat with good save to deny Jozy Altidore later in the match, insists he has put the error behind him already.
“It was a mistake. The important thing is not to let it affect you for however long is left in the game,” Green said.
“That is what you prepare for mentally. You don’t prepare mentally for making great saves and playing the perfect game. You prepare for trauma.
“It is regrettable and not what you want to happen but that’s life and you move on, you hold your head up high and get to work in training. It won’t affect me psychologically. I’m 30, I’m a man, and you have hardships in life and prepare for them.
“I’m strong enough to move on. At a younger point in my life it would have affected me more. But you hold your hand up and say ‘that’s gone, move on and don’t let it affect you’.”
Green found out he would be starting the World Cup opener just two hours before kick-off.
“I found out before we left for the game when they announced the team, with everyone else,” said Green. “It wasn’t a factor. I prepared the same as if I was going to play.
“You go through mental preparation the night before the game and prepare for moments of trauma in a game when it happens. It happened today and for me the important thing was to bounce back from it.”
England captain Gerrard backed Green to continue to play a vital role in their World Cup campaign.
”Rob will learn from this and he might make an important save that wins us a match. We’re all behind him. It was a bit of shock and it took us a while to get over it,” Gerrard said.
”It was a difficult game. The most important thing in the opening game is not to lose. The idea was to win but unfortunately we let a poor goal in and we couldn’t go and get the winner. The target now has to be seven points.”
Meanwhile, England manager Capello defended his decision not to name his goalkeeper until a couple of hours before kick-off.
“No, absolutely not,” he said. “I decided Green would be the goalkeeper because he played the last game very well and at Wembley (against Mexico) the performance was very good too. He made one mistake, but in the second half he made a good save. This is the problem of the goalkeeper.
“We have to accept the mistakes of goalkeepers and of referees and of forwards. This is football.”
Capello, however, refused to say whether he would stand by Green against Algeria, saying: “We have time to decide and to speak with him and I will decide.”