Mount and England raring to go

Jack Ogalbe
June 12th 2021, 4:18 pm
Last Updated 3 years ago
Shevchenko wary of fired-up England

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England midfielder Mason Mount believes he can end his season in style by helping England to glory at Euro 2020 this summer.

The 22-year-old has enjoyed an incredible campaign for club and country, as he helped Chelsea win the Champions League for the second time.

Mount set up the winning goal in the 1-0 win over Manchester City as his pass picked out Kai Havertz for the only goal of the match.

The playmaker watched the last World Cup at home with his parents, yet three years later, he has the chance to help England gain revenge over Croatia, their first opponents in Group D.

England boss Gareth Southgate is expected to start Mount in midfield, with Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson still struggling to prove his fitness.

Mount made his debut for England in 2019, but after 16 appearances for his country, he says he cannot wait to get going, and he believes his side can go all the way this summer.

He told reporters: “We are ready and raring to go. The first game at a tournament is obviously very important to get off to a good start. We are all so excited and looking forward to it.”

Southgate’s squad are the third youngest at the European Championships, with only Spain and Turkey taking more youngsters into the event.

While they lack experience, Mount believes it will help the Three Lions as the players should be fitter after a long and difficult season.

He added: “The Champions League was the 64th game of my season. But we are a young squad. When you are coming into a major tournament playing for your country, the tiredness in the legs goes out of the window.

“All we are worrying about is going far in the tournament and performing to the best of your ability.

“We talk about that fearlessness going into games and that desire to win, and we have that in this young group. We are hungry to do well and make the nation proud.”

England will have home advantage on Sunday with around 22,500 people set to make their way to Wembley. Southgate’s squad are bound to be nervous after losing 2-1 to Croatia in the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup.

Manchester United defender Harry Maguire is back in training ahead of the opening game, but it would come as a huge surprise to him risked. Luke Shaw, John Stones and Kyle Walker are reportedly going to form a back three, with the likes of Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling, Mason Mount, Jack Grealish and Phil Foden all pushing for starts in midfield.

Croatia boss Zlatko Dalic is still waiting to hear if Dejan Lovren can feature, and he may need to pass a fitness test. Luka Modric and Mateo Kovacic will look to control midfield, leaving Ante Rebic and Bruno Petkovic fighting it out to start up front.

Jack Ogalbe

The first choice in any quiz team, Jack is your man for stats, facts and information across a wide range of different sports. He has a vast knowledge of football across all countries and tournaments.