Declan Rice says England ‘score goals for fun in training’ and ‘will be good’ at World Cup despite matching San Marino’s open-play goal record in Nations League

    England midfielder Declan Rice has made a bold claim after England’s 1-0 defeat to Italy on Friday.

    The Three Lions produced another abject display at the San Siro, which ultimately resulted in them being dumped out of their UEFA Nations League group.

    England were beaten by Italy 1-0 in Milan on Friday

    Getty

    England were beaten by Italy 1-0 in Milan on Friday

    Giacomo Raspadori’s stunning 68th-minute strike broke the deadlock in Milan for Roberto Mancini’s men.

    There was simply nothing to get excited about from an England perspective, with the latest goalless show leaving England 450 minutes without a goal in open play – their worst run in 22 years.

    The Three Lions are one of only two nations who have failed to score a single non-penalty goal in the Nations League. The other is San Marino, who are made up of part-timers.

    After the clash, West Ham midfielder Rice spoke to the media and claimed that he is not worried ahead of the World Cup, despite his side’s poor form.

    “It’s not that we’re not creating the chances,” Rice said. “So many times, we got into the penalty box. Even myself, I could have had a shot, instead of laying it off.

    “I see it in training, there’s goals for fun. Trust me, we’re gonna be good.”

    Rice still believes his side will prove everybody wrong at the World Cup

    getty

    Rice still believes his side will prove everybody wrong at the World Cup

    It is just 58 days until the start of the tournament in the Gulf State and England are simply miles off the pace, without a win in five matches.

    Nevertheless, England manager Gareth Southgate echoed his midfielder’s thoughts.

    The Three Lions boss told talkSPORT: “We’re scratching our heads, given the attacking players we had on the pitch.

    “We found the spaces and dragged their defence out of shape. But the final bits of quality weren’t there.

    “That is hard to understand. I can’t stand in the dressing room and be critical of the players because I think we were on the right track.

    “It’s a night where we have to be very careful, in the dressing room, not to lose faith in what we’re doing and get distracted by, inevitably, what will be a lot of noise because of the results we’ve had.”

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