Pearce eager to avoid spectator role

19 July 2012 / 17:02

Stuart Pearce is hoping his wife has to go to the Olympics by herself - because that will mean Team GB's footballers are still fighting for the medals.

The Pearces have tickets for both athletics and equestrian events at the Games, but the former England international full-back will not be using his if his men's team progress to the latter stages of their competition.

He said: "I'm interested in the equestrianism because my wife keeps horses. We have got tickets to go and see that in Greenwich, but I'm not sure I will be able to make it, I certainly hope not, anyway. I have also got tickets for an athletic event in the stadium and once again, I hope my wife's going on her own and I'm not with her."

In the meantime, Pearce and his players are continuing their preparations, which see them face tournament favourites Brazil in their final warm-up game at Middlesbrough's Riverside Stadium on Friday night.

Great Britain have not fielded a team in the event since the 1960 Olympic Games and while Pearce, who made his international debut against the Brazilians, has tasted action at World Cup and European Championship finals, this will be something entirely new to him and his squad.

He said: "We know there's something special. When I've spoken to the players individually and said 'how are you feeling about it?', they say they find it different.

"There's just something special about it that probably we can't put into words. There's something of a magnitude which is just incredible, that we are involved in. The advice to all the players is, 'Look we are in it, let's give it our best and try and win the tournament'. That's what we will prepare to do.

"But you must enjoy it too. Couple those things together...I probably haven't got the right vocabulary to put it into words, but there's something just slightly special about this one."

Keeper Jason Steele, who will hope to be involved at his home ground, admitted he is making sure the Olympic experience will stay with him forever.

He said: "To be honest, I don't really think it'll sink in properly until it's all over. In years to come, I'm sure I'll cherish this forever. I'm forever being reminded by my dad to keep little things because I'll look back in years to come with my children and grandchildren and it will be something to hold on to."