Kyle Walker believes England have sufficient gamers with big-match expertise to problem for Euro 2024 glory – if they’ll excellent their mentality.
England rounded off 2023 with a forgettable 1-1 draw in North Macedonia on Monday night time having already assured their spot at subsequent summer time’s finals by beating Italy final month.
Gareth Southgate’s facet ended the calendar yr unbeaten and topped Group C of Euro 2024 qualifying in the method.
The Euro 2020 runners-up will now be prime seeds for December’s group-stage draw in Hamburg as England goal their first main silverware since 1966.
Walker insists they ended the yr properly regardless of having already secured qualification amid criticism of the performances in North Macedonia and in the 2-0 Wembley win over Malta.
“I don’t assume there’s actually been a drop off,” he advised Radio 5Live.
“There’s been a very good win in opposition to Malta. Okay, in case you go and rating eight everybody says you must have gone and scored eight- if we don’t rating eight it’s an issue.
“So it’s three factors. By no means thoughts if it’s an eight or 1-0, it’s nonetheless three factors on the board. We all know coming right here, we must always win. We should always win however the marketing campaign and the group is wrapped up and it was at all times going to be a tough one.
“However I mentioned firstly of the workforce discuss that it’s about mentality now, we’ve obtained the group of gamers that we’ve had for plenty of years now. We’re all mature, we’ve all been in large conditions, whether or not it’s Champions League finals, preventing for the Premier League, semi-finals of a World Cup, finals of the Euros.
“Now it’s about our mentality. Now it’s about mentality on the sector and off the sector to ensure that we take this nation to the place it deserves and that’s to hopefully decide up that European trophy.”
Walker, 33, has been put in as Manchester Metropolis captain this season however sported the armband for his nation for the primary time in Monday’s draw.
“It was a extremely proud second when the supervisor pulled me apart this afternoon and advised me that I might be main the workforce out,” he added.
“Clearly I’m doing that for Manchester Metropolis now however to do it for my nation is an actual large step in the right path and one other factor I’ve ticked off my checklist.
“We had to be affected person and try to break them down. They’d a again 5 and it’s at all times going to be robust however that’s no excuse.
“We all know that we must be coming right here, taking three factors and getting on the aircraft again residence and celebrating qualifying with a very good finish to the marketing campaign.
“However pay attention, we’ve certified and let’s not underestimate that. We’ve certified for a significant event as soon as once more and that’s what we would have liked to actually do.”