Gareth Southgate sees 'shift' in England supporters' attitude toward team

The Red Arrows fly over St George's Park as the England squad look

Gareth Southgate will board the England flight to Russian Federation on Tuesday with the increasingly firm conviction that his players have recovered from one of the lowest points in the team's history.

Marcus Rashford missed England's first training session in Russian Federation on Wednesday as a precaution after picking up a knee strain.

England's Rashford skips over Costa Rica's defender Cristian Gamboa during their worldwide friendly football in Leeds, England last Thursday.

England touched down in Russian Federation on Tuesday and upon their arrival, Southgate revealed that the 20-year-old had an issue with his knee and is now being assessed by the Three Lions medical staff.

They will be based in Repino for the group stages, which will also see the Three Lions face Belgium and Panama in Group G this summer. There was a clear shift in the identity of the team, we went to a back three and people have been warmed by that, not only the young players in this squad, but the young players in the system and the success with the junior teams. "We just wanted to get over here and settled to start to prepare for the games ahead", said England captain Harry Kane.

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England striker Jamie Vardy has likened the mood in the squad ahead of the World Cup to that of Leicester City's Premier League title-winning campaign.

England's arrival at their hotel was met with a strong security and media presence. The Under-17s' World Cup win, in particular, came at a moment where the profile of our young players was really high.

Having featured in over 50 games for Manchester United during the 2017-18 season, Rashford scored a stunning goal in England's friendly win against Costa Rica on Friday.

"We hope we can send people to work the following day having enjoyed our matches", said Southgate before departing for Russian Federation.

"I'm confident it won't happen (again) - I won't say 100 per cent because you never know in football - but in this team we wear our heart on our sleeve".

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