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England News: Butland vows to support Pickford

8 months ago

In the latest England news, Jack Butland says Jordan Pickford will have his full backing if the Everton keeper is Gareth Southgate’s first-choice keeper at the upcoming World Cup.

Stoke City stopper Butland was handed a start in the friendly win over Costa Rica last time out although manager Southgate is widely expected to make Pickford his number one in Russia.

Pickford played the full 90 minutes in the 2-1 win over Nigeria in the Three Lions’ previous fixture and was also handed the number one jersey when the squad numbers were announced.

Butland hasn’t given up hope that he will start in England’s opener against Tunisia but he says if either Pickford or Burnley keeper Nick Pope are selected ahead of him they will have his full support.

“It’s important that you’re humble and that you’re respectful and you put all pride aside,” said the Potters’ keeper.

“Whoever gets selected can’t succeed without the support and backing of the other two.

“Regardless of what happens, I want to be part of a successful England team and if I have to swallow my pride and disappointment at not being the number one, then I’ve got to do that for us to be successful and obviously to help whoever is in goal perform at their best.”

Butland, 25, made more saves than any other goalkeeper in the Premier League last season for relegated Stoke but Southgate is believed to favour Pickford due to his distribution ability.

England are 16/1 to win the World Cup outright with Betfair and 11/8 to win Group B, having been drawn against Belgium, Tunisia and Panama in the group stages.