John Stones says he has no intention of letting the opportunity to play in England’s first World Cup final in 52 years pass him by.
The Three Lions set up a last-four clash with Croatia on Wednesday in a 2-0 win over Sweden at the weekend.
Stones – who has started all five of England’s games at Russia 2018, scoring twice – is well aware that the opportunity to contest a World Cup final may never come around again and is relishing the chance to make it happen.
“As a kid, you have dreams of playing and scoring for England and how it would feel,” he told England’s YouTube channel.
“I’ve tried to embrace [this experience]. It might never come around again for me, so I’m trying to take every opportunity, bringing everything I’ve learned at [Manchester] City and my career to the table.
“It’s a proud moment for us all when we put on the jersey and I’m going to grab it with both hands, run with it and enjoy it as much as we can.
A brilliant episode of #LionsDen!
— England (@England) July 9, 2018
“We’re excited for Wednesday now – looking forward to it and we’re trying to prepare as much as we can.
“I don’t want to jinx it as we’re not there, but I’d love it to happen. I get a bit speechless speaking about it!
“To even think about the fact it’s one game to the final is exciting and we want to grab it with both hands.
“It’s the old cliche of one game at a time – that’’s how I’ve approached it and it’s done me no harm so far.
“We have one more step to go in Croatia and we’ll treat it as ‘one game at a time’. We’ll focus all our energy on it and then that’s the next step.”
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