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27th Mar 2018

These Alfie Mawson quotes perfectly sum up his attitude to representing his country

It clearly means a lot to him

Reuben Pinder

Refreshing to hear

International footballers, particularly England players, are often accused of not caring. The agenda is often pushed by those who only watch the tournaments, watch England’s inevitable collapse and put it down to a lack of effort or passion.

This is, of course, nonsense, but it is always refreshing to hear when a footballer comes out and speaks passionately about how much it means to them to pull on their national team’s jersey.

Swansea defender Alfie Mawson is in the England squad tonight, and could make his debut, if he comes off the bench. He has experience at U21 level, and the pride he takes from having represented his country, will be music to the ears of all England fans.

Speaking to the Guardian last year, Mawson discussed making his debut for the U21s, and the emotion he felt having represented England.

“I ended up taking loads of kit home, my mum and dad wear it all the time – they’re proud as punch. I wear it sometimes lounging around, just because it’s cool. But the best bit about being with England was singing the anthem when we were out in France. I stood there and I’ve never been so proud in my life. It was a great feeling and I remember thinking after the match: ‘This can’t be replicated. Will it really feel the same if I sing it again?’ But when I played in the Germany game, in March, it was exactly the same. And this is for the under-21s. I’m not taking that lightly but imagine what it would be like for the senior team.”

Mawson performed well in that tournament, and clearly it meant a lot to him. If he keeps his form up and goes to the World Cup, England fans will know they have a player who really cares.