Jones: Positive performance to prepare for qualifier

Thursday 04 Sep 2014
Phil Jones rises to head away against Norway

Phil Jones says victory over Norway will help England “bounce back” from the World Cup disappointment and prepare them for their opening Euro 2016 qualifier.

The Manchester United defender played the full 90 minutes at centre back on Wednesday night as captain Wayne Rooney’s second-half penalty secured the win

With their first game on the road to France 2016 against Switzerland coming up on Monday, the 22-year-old was pleased with the Wembley victory, and for his United team-mate Rooney.

Switzerland v England

UEFA Euro 2016 Qualifier
Monday 8 September 2014
7.45pm (BST), St Jakob Park, Basel
Watch live on ITV

"I thought we started the game really well, took control of the game,” said Jones. "It was disappointing at the start of the second half. I thought we were a bit slow and sloppy in possession, but I thought we finished well.

“I think we created quite a few chances, but just didn't stick them in the net. I am delighted for Wayne. He is always calm, composed and will make a great captain." 

He continued: "You're always going to get teams coming here making it difficult for us, making the pockets of space even tighter for the likes of Raheem [Sterling] to get on the ball. 

"It is always important to bounce back after really disappointing times. It was a great exercise as they made it difficult for us. It was nice to get the win and overall it was a positive performance.” 

Roy Hodgson’s men arrived at their training base at St. George’s Park on Thursday where they will train until flying out to Basel to meet a strong Swiss side in their opening Group E qualifier. 

Switzerland reached the last 16 at this summer’s World Cup in Brazil, losing 1-0 after extra time to Finalists Argentina, and Jones is expecting a tough game at St Jakob Park. 

He added: "It will be a very difficult test.

"They pose a good threat on the attack and I am sure we will study them in detail.

“They are a strong national team and they have some good individual players. The preparation period is crucial. I am looking forward to the game."

By Jamie Bradbury FA Editor