Roy Hodgson has praised the way his England side have worked for each other during their Euro 2012 campaign.
The Netherlands, who reached the 2010 World Cup final, have already exited at the group stage amid reports of swelling egos and differences in the squad that have had an adverse effect on performances.
Hodgson insisted that no team comes without players with egos, England included, but suggested that team belief has stemmed from a new sense of trust among the players.
“I don’t think there are any words necessarily that have any magic effect,” Hodgson told reporters.
“I think it’s just making certain that everybody realises – as they do – that if you want to be successful as a team you have to perform to your ability and trust the people around you to perform to theirs.
“I think any national team is going to have players with egos – that’s normal and I think you want that as well because it’s the player with the ego who is often the good player, the player who makes the difference.”
Many have noted the togetherness of Hodgson’s men during the competition compared to previous England teams despite the well-documented controversies surrounding the national side before the tournament.
Some players have said that the national side feels more like a club than it has done before, with everyone getting along very well. The boss expressed his delight at the mood in the camp.
“I’ve been very happy with the way these players have really worked for each other and seeing the way they are after the games, and seeing the way they congratulate each other,” Hodgson said.
“That’s something I’ve got to be pleased about and something to keep working on.”
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