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Euro 2020: Marcus Rashford says England ‘aren’t scared of any team’

There is nobody better at getting his message heard than England forward Marcus Rashford.

Whether he was discussing his recent reception with Barack Obama, his relationship with Sir Alex Ferguson or his inspiring fight against child hunger, the 23-year-old, once again, hit all the right notes at St George’s Park on Wednesday.

But it was football that was at the forefront of Rashford’s thoughts, primarily England’s chances of lifting the Euro 2020 trophy.

Marcus Rashford says Gareth Southgate’s England squad don’t feel threatened by anyone 

Every team at this year’s Euros has played at least once now. France’s win over Germany on Tuesday, without really having to shift out of third gear, won’t have gone unnoticed. Nor will Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired stroll against Hungary.

Rashford, though, remains in a bullish mood. ‘One thing I’d say is we are not scared of any team we come up against,’ said the Manchester United star.

‘You have to work hard and believe in yourself and your team-mates. If you don’t do that you may as well forget about winning.

‘We’re not scared of any other teams. Are there teams that have played well and impressed us? Yes, definitely. There have been some strong performances, some performances that make you sit back and enjoy football.

France's win over Germany on Tuesday, without having to work, won't have gone unnoticed

France’s win over Germany on Tuesday, without having to work, won’t have gone unnoticed

Nor will Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired stroll against Hungary on Tuesday (pictured)

Nor will Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired stroll against Hungary on Tuesday (pictured) 

‘Going forward, if we are going to win the tournament we are going to have to play against the best teams in the tournament. We want to look forward to those games.

‘We don’t want to be scared of playing against these teams. We have exposed ourselves to more of these big games against the best teams, the biggest nations and some of the best players in the world and we’ve managed to deal with it and win a lot more of the games than before the World Cup.

‘I remember before the World Cup in 2018, we were struggling against the big teams to get results. I think after the World Cup, we’ve managed to get some better results and played some of our best football.’

Of course, England must clinch victory against Scotland at Wembley on Friday before even thinking about mixing it with France and Portugal.

Sunday’s win over Croatia takes the pressure off the domestic showdown but defeat by Steve Clarke’s side could leave Gareth Southgate’s men in a tight spot heading into Tuesday’s final group game against the Czech Republic.

Friday will certainly be an emotional affair — that comes with the territory in such games.

Rashford admits there are teams that have 'impressed' them but insists they aren't scared

Rashford admits there are teams that have ‘impressed’ them but insists they aren’t scared 

He says they are the games that England want to play and that they get excited for

He says they are the games that England want to play and that they get excited for

But while Rashford admits England have to be business-like, he realises that is far easier said than done against the Scots.

‘As players you want to play in the biggest, most historical games,’ he said.

‘Through our careers this is going to be up there with one of the biggest games that we play, one of the games we remember for the rest of our careers. For me, I look back at the last time I played against them (in 2017) — the atmosphere, the build-up, it was unique.

‘In football everyone wants to be beat everyone, but in some games, how the game is being played, the atmosphere, the crowd and how much you want to win — it all comes together.

‘It’s similar to club games against Manchester City and Liverpool —you have a different feeling. You can’t put a finger on it because you approach every game the same. It’s just unique.’

Whether or not Rashford starts the game, however, remains to be seen. He only played the final 19 minutes against Croatia.

England beat Croatia in their opening game of the tournament thanks to Sterling's goal

England beat Croatia in their opening game of the tournament thanks to Sterling’s goal

If they beat Scotland they will be guaranteed a place in the next round of the tournament

If they beat Scotland they will be guaranteed a place in the next round of the tournament 

Raheem Sterling’s winning goal and performance means he is likely to keep his place in the starting XI, so Rashford is effectively competing with Phil Foden for a spot.

‘You have to be a professional about it, you can’t say that you are not upset or annoyed if you start as a substitute because as a player that’s natural,’ he said.

‘You want to play every game, but it’s about your reaction to that and if you start putting your head down and sulking and not training properly, it doesn’t have a good effect on the team.

‘For me, I just keep working hard in training and in the games if I do come on or if I start.

‘You move on from it and I’m happy the team got the three points, that’s the main thing.’

Three points Friday and England can start dreaming.

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