11 June 2024

‘Elite mentality’ has John Stones in good shape for Euro 2024 – Anthony Gordon

11 June 2024

Anthony Gordon has praised the “elite mentality” of John Stones as England’s full Euro 2024 squad trained in Germany for the first time.

All 26 players took to the pitch at the Ernst-Abbe-Sportfeld in Jena on Tuesday afternoon as Gareth Southgate ran the rule over his ranks in front of a small crowd of invited locals.

Stones took part despite coming off at half-time in Friday’s 1-0 friendly loss to Iceland having suffered an early injury that saw him leave Wembley with strapping on his ankle.

The Manchester City defender, though, remains in contention to start Sunday’s Group C opener against Serbia in Gelsenkirchen and Gordon has been impressed by Stones’ response.

“As I said after the match, I was a bit worried when he went down because he’s such a big player for us – but he’s fine,” the Newcastle forward said.

“He’s got an elite mentality, so I’ve had faith in him. It’s really important (to have everyone training).

“We want everyone as fit and healthy as possible going into the tournament so we can perform our best.”

He’s got an elite mentality, so I’ve had faith in him. It’s really important

With everyone out on the pitch, it meant Luke Shaw was also part of the hour-long session – the Manchester United left-back having not played since suffering a hamstring injury in February.

Southgate included him in his provisional 33-man group despite saying it was a “long shot” that Shaw would be fit in time to feature in Germany.

That has now been revised and, although the game against Serbia is likely to come too soon, the 28-year-old could be available later in the group stage.

Asked if Shaw was on the right path, Gordon replied: “Yes, he looked like that. He’s back in training now and doing really well.

“I did a bit of my rehab with him and he was way ahead of schedule.

“A few people have said it, the squad has never been so competitive – everyone is in form and everyone has come here in a really good place. There is definitely competition for places.”

England will now be training at their base at the Spa and Golf Resort Weimarer Land situated in the small town of Blankenhain in the middle of Germany.

With plenty of hard yards to put in on the pitches, Gordon has also been delighted with the set-up for when the time comes to relax.

“Base camp is unbelievable,” he added.

“Honestly, I wish you could see it. We have everything we could ask for – basketball court, padel court, spa for recovery.

“We have absolutely everything and couldn’t have asked for anything better. It’s a great place to be because when you come away from home, away from family for so long – hopefully – you need that base and start to make it a home from home. We’ve definitely got that.”

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