TEAMtalk guest Frank Malley believes England can topple France in their Euro 2012 opener if the real Steven Gerrard stands up on Monday.
Will the real Steven George Gerrard stand up?
Will the real Gerrard, the one who has carried Liverpool Football Club season after season over the past decade, turn up in Donetsk on Monday evening?
If he does then England have a chance against France in their first match of the European Championships.
Forget all the doom and gloom. Forget all the hot air over the non-selection of Rio Ferdinand. Forget the injuries, the absentees, the fact that Wayne Rooney is suspended for the first two matches of the tournament and that England have a manager in Roy Hodgson who has barely had time to shake hands with all his players.
England's best chance of beating France and then going on to reach the knockout phases of Euro 2012 lies in Gerrard and his uncanny ability at his best to lift the talent and the spirits of those around him.
England are not going to win any of their matches at Euro 2012 by outpassing the opposition.
As frustrating as it is, that is simply beyond their compass. Fabio Capello was driven to distraction by England's inability to treasure the football. In narrow victories over Norway and Belgium, England only proved that, under Hodgson, passing to a player in a similar coloured shirt is unlikely to be one of their strengths.
Yet when it comes to determination and energy and old-fashioned grit and work rate and the ability to win when not playing at one's best, then Gerrard is the epitome of Hodgson's England.
There was good reason Hodgson's first move as manager was to make Gerrard his captain. Good reason, too, why he made a point of highlighting the tackles and the headers won in a man-of-the-match performance by Gerrard against Belgium in the post-match press conference at Wembley last weekend.
He wanted to reiterate to his less-experienced players the bottom line in the Hodgson era. England in Poland and Ukraine may not have the most-talented squad ever to leave their shores but in terms of industry they must not be eclipsed.
Already, Hodgson has produced a pleasing harmony in defence where the solidity of goalkeeper Joe Hart should not be underestimated.
England will be tough to beat, but how are they going to win?
That's where Gerrard comes in. England need three performances from the Liverpool man. Not from his international portfolio where he has scored 19 goals in 91 matches and too often been a shadow of the player in Koppite red.
England require the deluxe Gerrard. The player who single-handedly dragged Liverpool to Champions League glory from a seemingly hopeless position of 3-0 down at half-time against AC Milan in Istanbul in 2005.
The player, too, who won the FA Cup for Liverpool against West Ham in 2006 after producing a scorching equaliser in the dying seconds of normal time.
The player who appears motivated most of all by seemingly overwhelming odds.
France have won 15 and lost none of their last 21 matches. They are on a roll under new manager Laurent Blanc. They have rediscovered their creativity and flair with players such as Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema.
Yet Hodgson says: "I've got a team in my head that can do well against them."
Whatever that proves to be, one thing is essential. The real Steven Gerrard needs to be its beating heart.
By Frank Malley, PA Sport