Lewis Dunk has discussed the change in mentality he has noticed with England following his recall to the national team.
Dunk was recalled to the England squad earlier this year, four-and-a-half years after earning his first cap for the Three Lions.
The Brighton centre-back is again involved as England prepare to face Ukraine and Scotland this month and Dunk has opened up on the difference in mentality he has noticed since his last experience in the squad.
“We had a meeting the other day and he’s talking about winning the Euros and the whole squad is thinking about winning the Euros,” Dunk said, as per The Guardian.
“I would say that’s the big change – in mentality. It’s not: ‘How far can we get in a tournament?’ It’s: ‘We will win this tournament. We want to win this tournament.’ Being around these top players, I can see why he is saying that.”
Dunk has been rewarded for his consistent club form with a return to the England squad, with the 31-year-old having thrived playing under Roberto De Zerbi at the Amex Stadium.
De Zerbi hailed Dunk as one of Europe’s top centre-backs last season and the Brighton captain believes he has benefitted from the manager’s unique methods.
“I see football in a completely different way since the new manager has come in,” he said.
“The idea of what I did before … I thought it made sense. But when you learn something completely different, you believe in it and this makes sense. You think: ‘Why didn’t I know this?’
“It’s just the style of play. All our games now are about pressure, playing with opposition teams when they’re pressing high or pressing low. It’s when to pass the ball, the timing of that, the timing of movements.
“The style probably looks scary to the fans, especially at home games, when we pass around the six-yard box. It sounds crazy. But we know the idea of the pass or what we are gaining from it. We are doing it to score at the other end, to get [Kaoru] Mitoma and Solly March in one-v-one positions.
“There is a method behind the madness. We rehearse it every day and now I know every position on the pitch, where they should be, the time they should move and what angles they should give. One presses from this angle, one presses from that angle. We know where the ball should go to reach past the pressure.”