Published: Tue, July 10, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Southgate acknowledges England players are in a different era

Southgate acknowledges England players are in a different era

But the Tottenham Hotspur player, who grew up in Portugal and answered questions from Brazilian media in fluent Portuguese, says that a great part of the team spirit has been the commitment and approach of all players, regardless of their place on the team sheet.

"They are willing to put their heads through a brick wall", Young said with smile.

May the best team win.

"The only time we went out was after the first game against Uruguay when we drew 0-0, which wasn't a good start".

"Set pieces have been a massive thing for us and other teams through the whole of the World Cup", Ashley Young, one of England's set-piece takers, said Monday.

Andy Murray, the Scottish former Wimbledon champion, touched a nerve when he said he would be supporting "anyone but England" at the 2006 World Cup, prompting an angry backlash from English sports fans.

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"France don't have a Hazard, a De Bruyne or a Lukaku, or a Fellaini, who played really well (against Brazil)".

The Barcelona midfielder showed his class when asked about the prospect of facing England in the semi-final, highlighting what it means to face the country where football began.

"I remember people saying he's going to be a one-hit wonder and he's just completely proven them wrong and blown it out the water". Winning teams are consistent teams in terms of lineups and I don't think the boys will have been tested too much physically by Sweden. It's tough for them to change the habit of a lifetime and get behind Gareth Southgate's team in the World Cup. They've lined up in freaky formations to confuse their markers - like against Colombia in the round of 16 where four players stood in a row before splintering off.

"But the way the tournament's been going so far, whoever we come up against we feel confident we're going to win and we have to be like that if we're going to get into the final".

Meanwhile, five of England's goals have been headers, also tying the record for a single World Cup since 1966. If we played this same tournament again in maybe two months, then you might have three or four different semi-finalists.

But at this moment you should not get ahead of yourself and think about what will happen in two or four years' time, because you are in the semi-finals of the World Cup.

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