Even though England's recent struggles have dampened anticipation for their chances in Qatar, striker Harry Kane says the team is "not afraid" to declare that they can win the 2022 World Cup.
Bookmakers consider Gareth Southgate's squad a top contender because they advanced to the World Cup semi-finals in 2018 and placed second at the European Championships in 2017.
Still, Kane thinks England can go all the way in the Middle East and win their first major trophy since 1966's World Cup.
Kane, captain of the English national team, recently gave an exclusive interview to Sky Sports, in which he said: "As a team, we must have faith that we can pull off the victory.
"When I think back on England from 10 or 15 years ago, I realize that we were almost afraid to admit that we wanted to win it. As a group, I feel like one of the most significant changes we've made with Gareth over the past several years is losing our inhibitions around making statements like that.
"Why go to the World Cup if you don't think you can bring home the trophy? Look, we're coming to this tournament to win it because we feel we can.
"We'll need a lot of help from above, some good fortune, and a lot of things to fall into place for us to succeed.
But I think it's important to not be bashful about stating that as the reason for our trip.
"Lowered Expectations Due to Poor Form"
Southgate's squad, however, enters the World Cup on the heels of a winless, relegation-ending Nations League campaign.
After three draws and three losses, England kicks off the tournament on November 21 against Iran looking for their first win in seven games, but Kane thinks their poor form has helped lower expectations heading into Qatar.
Kane remarked, "The first game is really important, for sure." Of course, historically speaking, this isn't England's finest hour. This is the best run we've had since Gareth took over.
"But in a way that can be a really good thing before a major tournament, because it allows you not to be carried away, or even the media or the press to get carried away," he said.
It's possible that the level of pressure we're under now is different than it would be if we'd won every game leading up to the tournament.
For us, the most important thing is to do well in major tournaments, and the last two have gone well.
"We have a good confidence within ourselves that we can go and have a great tournament in Qatar."
Kane: Rolling straight into World Cup mid-season 'helps'
Kane has been in fine form for Tottenham this season having scored 13 goals in all competitions, including a goal in Spurs' final game before the World Cup in Saturday's home win over Leeds.
But the 29-year-old has played 22 consecutive games for Tottenham, raising question marks over his fitness levels.
Kane, however, believes the mid-season World Cup, which gets under way on November 20, is helpful for him.
Sure, I'd rather go into it having played a ton of games where I felt game-ready, he said.
"After the season, you sometimes take a break in the summer, and by the time the next season rolls around, you realize you haven't played nearly as many games as you had hoped.
As long as you can keep things under control and bounce back quickly, I think rolling into it can help. To me, the most crucial thing for any player right now is rest and recuperation.
I'm doing everything I can to make sure I'm at full strength for the game, because no matter how hard you train, it all comes down to this.
It will be Kane's fourth big event with England in the 2022 World Cup, and he has spoken up about the difficulties he expects to face.
The pressure at major events is greater than at any other, he noted. "To play for England is always a daunting task, but to do so in a big tournament adds an extra layer of pressure and urgency.
"Teams who make it to the championship game often have to win at least one penalty shootout, which can be nerve-wracking under the best of circumstances.
"This camp is shorter than the typical one lasting five or six weeks due to the timing of the season. It's a long time to be slightly beyond your comfort zone, considering that you're usually away for four or five weeks before to the tournament and then away for four or five weeks during the tournament.
However, "I suppose what distinguishes the top nations and the winning nations from the rest is who can cope with that the best," he said.
We should be more forgiving to England at the World Cup, according to Neville.
Gary Neville remarked on Sky Sports' World Cup Special: "All of these guys deserve a ton of praise in my opinion. When I consider my own playing history and the tournaments I've participated in, I realize that these other players advanced further than I did. They made it to the championship and semi-final rounds. As a nation, England should be incredibly proud of it.
"Gareth has proved his worthiness and should be granted a more challenging competition. I'm not suggesting we abandon the group stage just yet, but if he advanced to the second round or was eliminated in the quarterfinals, he should have the option of continuing play.
"Those players have a tremendous rapport with one another. There is a noticeable shift in the mood and energy of the team since their arrival. They seem to get along, as seen by the results of their Premier League matchups. If we need help in the competition, I believe they can provide it.
"Because of the draw, I don't see them making it past the quarterfinals, but it doesn't imply it's a horrible event or that these individuals deserve mockery. They've had four or five great years with Gareth as coach, therefore we should give them a break in this tournament."