‘I don’t feel the pressure’ – Jordan Pickford can’t wait for World Cup to begin and insists he and England teammates are coping well with Qatar heat

    Jordan Pickford exuded confidence as England put the finishing touches to their World Cup preparations.

    The Three Lions will square off against Iran on Monday at 1pm in Qatar – with commentary of that match live on talkSPORT.

    Pickford heads into his third major tournament for England

    Getty

    Pickford heads into his third major tournament for England

    Gareth Southgate’s side are undoubtedly one of the favourites to win the whole thing, having reached the semi-final in 2018 as well as making the final of Euro 2020.

    Being a goalkeeper is one of the highest pressure roles on the football pitch, but Everton star Pickford relishes that.

    Speaking to talkSPORT’s Faye Carruthers, he said: “For me, personally, I don’t feel the pressure. I thrive on the big game experiences. There’s no bigger stage than playing in the World Cup.

    “I don’t feel that pressure and I get enjoyment from having that pressure. I love playing massive matches and I feel I’m ready.

    “All I can do is prepare myself in training and mentally I’m fully prepared. I’ve done all my work and ticked every box ready for the tournament.”

    Pickford insisted, however, that the England camp were not getting too carried away and thinking to the knockout stages, or even beyond Iran, just yet.

    Pickford is Southgate’s undisputed No.1, but has competition from Aaron Ramsdale (pictured) and Nick Pope

    Getty

    Pickford is Southgate’s undisputed No.1, but has competition from Aaron Ramsdale (pictured) and Nick Pope

    He continued: “We know the plan that we want to go all the way to the end and win it. We have to deal with the first game then move on to the second and third.

    “We have to deal with the group first, it’s going to be tough. In World Cup football, no game is going to be easy. We have to be on our A game in every individual game we play.

    “We all want to go and the whole staff and the nation know our goal, but there’s a lot of hard work that has to be done before there.

    “We never look past our first game.”

    Much has been made of the hot weather conditions in Qatar and Southgate’s decision to train during the searing midday heat.

    Pickford has conceded 17 Premier League goals this season in 14 games

    Getty

    Pickford has conceded 17 Premier League goals this season in 14 games

    Pickford believes it has helped them get to grips with the climate, though, adding: “We’ve trained early for a couple of days at peak times for the sun, really hot and I was burning up, but it’s alright. 

    “We’ve also trained a bit later so we’ve had that adaptation. We trained at 3.30pm yesterday [Saturday] and that will be just before kick-off.

    “The weather cools down when the sun goes in, so I don’t think it will be as hot as you think. 

    “Hopefully the air con in the stadium works well.”

    talkSPORT World Cup 2022 Coverage

    talkSPORT will be offering wall-to-wall coverage of the 2022 World Cup

    We’ll be broadcasting all 64 games in the tournament live, with over 600 hours of coverage across our network.

    You can tune in to talkSPORT and talkSPORT 2 via our free online streaming service at talkSPORT.com.

    talkSPORT is widely available across the UK via DAB digital radio and on 1089 or 1053 AM.

    You can also download the talkSPORT app, or ask your smart speaker to play talkSPORT.

    Source

    Previous articleProud Jordan Pickford cherishes Euro 2020 silver medal as England ace says he’s using it to inspire him to World Cup win