MX23RW : Tuesday, August 21 06:34:00

England boss Gareth Southgate: 'Winning mentality is key'

Southgate: 'Winning mentality is key'
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Gareth Southgate claims that having 18 players with experience of playing for a top-six side in the Premier League can only be a positive for England.

Gareth Southgate has called on his England players to "feed off" the winning mentality that comes with playing for an elite Premier League side.

The Three Lions' 23-man squad for next month's World Cup in Russia is made up of 18 players who ply their trade for a team that finished in the top six this season.

Only two outfield players, Jamie Vardy and Harry Maguire, are contracted to a club that finished any lower than sixth in the English top flight.

Southgate hopes that this will only be a benefit for his side next month, telling reporters: "I think it's big. We are seeing that with Manchester City having a core of four English players most weeks, United having a core of English players, Liverpool the same.

"Look at the experience [Jordan] Henderson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Adam Lallana and Trent [Alexander-Arnold] have gained in the Champions League. It was the same for the Tottenham and City boys. They have been in big-match environments where they know what it takes - the commitment and mindset and hurdles to be overcome.

"They are working with top European coaches. There was always an assumption that European coaches will come here and pick foreign players. [Mauricio] Pochettino has gone with an English core - that is a great message for our players. They can feed off of that, and the players they work with."

England's squad is their third-youngest ever for a World Cup finals.

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Trent Alexander-Arnold celebrates getting on the scoresheet during the Premier League game between Liverpool and Swansea City on December 26, 2017
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