Mason Mount says England became determined to “make the stadium silent” in the controversial 4-0 win away to Hungary.
Gareth Southgate’s players had cups and a flare thrown at them before some were subjected to racial abuse in Budapest, but the squad had been well prepared to keep focus and responded with one of their finest halves of football.
Mount said they wanted to lay a marker for the game, to show the team were moving on from Euro 2020, as well as to shut up a hostile crowd.
“When the whole stadium is against us we grow,” Mount said. “As players we spoke about it and knew it would be a hostile environment and we revel in the opportunities and we want to show what we can do on the ball and make the stadium silent with how we are playing and what we are doing, and we showed that in the second half. We had a killer instinct in front of goal with the first and then, bang, with the next three.
“It killed the game off and then gave them no hope. As soon as we scored and what happened in the corner flag, you could tell within the atmosphere that something was going to be thrown or something would happen, and luckily no-one got hurt or anything.
“We obviously have had it in the past and it is a disgrace how it keeps on happening. Obviously I said a little about us players focusing on the pitch but when these things happen, consequences need to take place and the FA will be speaking to Fifa about it, and hopefully it keeps getting put to them and they hand out bans, but it needs to stop and we need to get this out of football.”
Mount with Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka
Mount said he believes the performance and result against Hungary show that the team are going to another level after losing the Euro 2020 final to Italy.
“We know what we have got in the team and obviously to come off a final and what happened in the summer, this was a massive, massive game for us to put a stamp down that we are coming back, coming back stronger and with even more focus and a stronger desire to succeed and do well, and do even more going forward after what we felt in the summer.
“This was a massive win and especially in the group as it put us more ahead. We won’t take a breather and we have two more games this camp and we are obviously very focused and ready to keep pushing.”
Southgate, meanwhile, expects England to get a good reception at the first game at Wembley, against Andorra on Sunday, since the Euro 2020 final.
“I don’t have any doubts that the players will get a fantastic reception on Sunday,” the England coach said. “I think the country knows the journey they took them on and although there were some ridiculous things happened on the night of the final and some awful things were said by some, it’s like we are saying tonight: You shouldn’t tar everybody with the same brush.
“We shouldn’t tar all the Hungarian fans with that brush and it’s certainly not the case with our own fans. We know the groundswell of support that came immediately after that abuse the three boys [Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka and Jadon Sancho] received, and I witnessed that first hand when I went to Brentford and saw Bukayo come on – it was an incredible experience to see.
“So, I’m sure that’s exactly what we’ll see on Sunday and the players completely deserve it.”
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