Jack Grealish has praised Gareth Southgate’s tactics against Germany as a ‘masterclass’ after the attacker came off the bench to help the Three Lions beat their old rivals.
England will face Ukraine in the quarter-finals of Euro 2020 after beating Germany 2-0, with Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane getting on the scoresheet at Wembley.
Grealish was left on the bench to begin with, but set up Kane’s goal. The Aston Villa star was full of praise for his manager.
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“It were a masterclass, weren’t it?,” he told
“Fair play to the manager and the coaching staff, they changed it up and we matched Germany. It worked in our favour. Probably our best performance of this Euros.
I thought there was some outstanding performances, Jordan Pickford and Harry Maguire to name a couple. A great team performance once again.
Many were surprised to see Grealish among the substitutes and such a conservative starting eleven, but the cautious approach helped England keep Germany’s most influential players quiet.
Grealish revealed he was given a quick pep talk from Southgate just before he came on in the 69th minute.
"He (Southgate) just told me to go on and express myself, and play the way I usually do, with a smile on my face," Grealish told BBC Sport.
"I went on and did that, and luckily for me I created one of the goals."
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"[I] Absolutely loved it. It’s always nice when the fans are calling your name, but it’s not about me, it’s about the team.
I just come on, try to create and obviously I came on, played a part in the first goal and got the assist for the second so I think it was a good performance from myself.
"When I first came on I was slipping all over the place actually but in the end it ended well."
Ukraine await England in the next round after their epic extra-time win over Sweden. England will be favourites against Ukraine, but Grealish insisted a poor performance would render the Germany victory pointless.
“Whoever you play they’re going to be a difficult team,” he said.
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“They’re not in the quarter-finals for no reason. We’re going to take every game like we’re playing the best team in the world, that’s what the manager’s said to us.
“If we don’t perform in the next game today means nothing.”
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