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“He know what he’s doing, doesn’t he?”
That was Kyle Walker’s brilliant reaction as he found out that Jose Mourinho picked him in his starting XI to face Croatia in England’s Euro 2020 opener on Sunday.
The Special One, speaking exclusively to talkSPORT on Friday, picked his line-up for Sunday’s Wembley clash and some of his calls have surprised many.
Perhaps the biggest was his decision to opt for Chelsea’s Ben Chilwell over over Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw, with the pair notoriously sharing a poor relationship during their days together at Old Trafford.
Walker, however, got the nod in his XI and it’s safe to say he was chuffed by Mourinho’s decision.
“Oh, thanks Jose!”, Walker said. “I think he knows what he’s doing as he’s been a manager for a long time. Putting me as right-back he’s in my good books!
“Thank you Jose for that!”
Walker, speaking about the England’s squad in general, said the Three Lions’ abundance of versatile players should bode well at the tournament, having himself been deployed as a centre-back and full-back.
“Obviously there’s personnel in the team that can play in different positions.,” he added. “Both me and Reece [James] have played as a right sided centre-half. Luke [Shaw] has done that for Manchester United.
“Everyone’s capable of playing in a number of positions, Tripps [Kieran Trippier] has right and left-back – so it’s a good problem for Gareth to have to pick a starting XI.
“Each and every one of us is here by merit and it’s not just because of a few good performances. It’s been a season-long and rightly everyone is here on merit. It’s good for the team and it’s good for English football so hopefully everyone can play at some stage of the tournament to get us to that final that we all want.”
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