Hassan Yebda believes Algeria must win their opening 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ game against Slovenia if they want to maintain hope of an upset in Group C.
The Desert Hawks are outsiders in their section, with England and the United States heavily favoured to reach the second stage.
However, midfielder Yebda, who is contracted to Portuguese side Benfica but spent last season on loan at Portsmouth, is targeting a three-point start in Polokwane on Sunday.
The first game is very, very important, if we can win it will be better for us.
He said: "In football you never know. We will do our best and play the first game against Slovenia and try to win. The first game is very, very important, if we can win it will be better for us. Slovenia though have a good team."
The 26-year-old is also expecting a tough encounter against the English - a side they face five days later in Cape Town.
He added: "I see them on TV. Frank Lampard, Wayne Rooney and John Terry are all very good players. It will be very difficult for us."