Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford thinks England He could win the World Cup later this year and think the Nations League could provide the perfect preparation for Qatar.
The 28-year-old is heading into his next international break after helping keep Everton in the Premier League.
Pickford hopes to keep England’s gloves for the Four Nations League matches, starting with Saturday’s trip to Hungary before facing Germany in Munich and then returning home to face Italy and the reverse match with the Hungarians at Molino.
He made 43 caps for England and appeared in the Euro 2020 final against Italy last summer, having also been a key part of the Three Lions who reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in Russia three years earlier.
After being named Gareth Southgate’s first-choice for a time, Pickford also scored in the penalty shoot-out win over Switzerland which saw England finish third in the inaugural Nations League final of 2019.
The competition is only in its third edition, but Pickford insists it could be crucial in the run-up to the World Cup.
“We all know what our ambitions are for the World Cup, but it’s four very competitive matches ahead and we want to win,” he said.
“It’s a competition – I know it’s just a new competition – and it’s better than playing friendlies. We’re going to Munich to play in a full arena so it’s very competitive matches that we want. achieve.
Asked if he thought England could win the World Cup later this year, Pickford replied: “Yes. Obviously it will be a challenge against the best teams in the world, but it’s about of our self-confidence.
“We’ve come a long way and been disappointed with the World Cup semi-finals and the Euro final – that disappointment motivates us.
“Disappointment gets closer and loses, reaches the final and loses.
“We’re proud of what we’ve achieved, but when you get closer it gives you more confidence to go and win the World Cup.”
While Pickford remains the favorite to retain the number one shirt, especially after Everton’s thrilling survival, his position will be threatened by Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale.
The 24-year-old enjoyed an impressive debut at the Emirates Stadium and won his first England title in a 10-0 win over San Marino in November.
“Ramez had a really good season, his first season at Arsenal and it was fantastic,” Pickford said.
“But for me the focus is always on yourself too. I know I have to be at my best every day in training because you will always be in this competition, with England and at club level. also.
“You always have to keep pushing yourself, keep setting goals, improving and improving.
“You want others to play well, you want others to push, so I think when we train together, we push each other every day to get better and better. When you have three boys, who push each other to being the best allows you to do a good job.
“I think since I’ve been in the system with England there’s always been good competition. I remember my first camp, I was here with Hart (Joe Hart) and Jack (Butland) too. There has always been competition, and I think there will always be competition.
“Yeah, Nick (Bob) and the Rams had two really good seasons, and they’re a really good competition for me.”
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