England star Jack Grealish labels situation in which Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell are self-isolating – after coming into contact with Scotland’s Covid-positive Billy Gilmour – as ‘BAFFLING’… with Chelsea pair likely to miss last-16 clash next Tuesday
- England players Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell are in isolation until next Monday
- It comes after they came into contact with Covid-positive Billy Gilmour last week
- But Jack Grealish has called the bizarre situation as ‘baffling’ and ‘crazy’
- There is exasperation that Gareth Southgate is without players despite not one positive coronavirus case within the squad
- Find out the latest Euro 2020 news including fixtures, live action and results here
Jack Grealish has called the situation that has left Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell in self-isolation ‘baffling’ and stressed England’s players are stringently maintaining Covid-19 protocols.
The Chelsea pair were forced to miss Tuesday’s 1-0 win over the Czech Republic and are unlikely to be unavailable for the next week’s round of 16 clash as they have been forced to separate after spending time with their club mate Billy Gilmour after the 1-0 win over Scotland.
Gareth Southgate, England’s head coach, is furious about the issue, having found out so late that he would not be able to use Mount or Chilwell, and there is an exasperation within the camp that England are without key players who have continually tested negative.
Mason Mount (R) and Ben Chilwell (L) are isolating after coming into ‘close contact’ with Scotland’s Billy Gilmour, who has tested positive for Covid-19
Jack Grealish admits he is ‘baffled’ by the decision despite numerous negative Covid tests
Grealish argued there was discrepancy in the fact that Scotland were only without one man for their clash against Croatia and stressed that it is wrong to think anyone within England’s camp is not treating the situation seriously.
‘Personally, I think it is crazy how we haven’t got one positive case in our team and we’ve got two players isolating,’ said Grealish.
‘But Scotland have got one positive case and have got one person isolating. That baffles me a little bit. But I can’t really say too much on it. It is what it is.
‘With what’s going on in the world over the past 18 months, we all have to stick to these rules. And when we do everything around the camp, in our hotel, we all do stick to the rules. But it is obviously a loss not having “Mase” and “Chilly”. I’m sure they will be working hard.
‘I don’t know what they are going to be able to do. If they are going to have a treadmill stuck in their room or something next week. But I am sure they will be fit for the game next when we get them back. But it does baffle me a little bit the way we’ve had to have two people isolating.’
Gareth Southgate is furious, having found out late that Mount and Chilwell were unavailable
Mount’s absence, ironically, has offered Grealish the opportunity to cement his place in England’s starting line-up and his performance, full of determination and creativity, was one of the highlights of a win that secured Southgate’s team top spot in Group D.
It was fitting that Grealish provided the assist for Raheem Sterling but, that said, there is still lots of room for improvement and that will be required if England are going to go further than the round of 16. They need more goals and creativity.
Grealish, though, argued it has been lost how effective England’s defence have been.
This is the first time in 55 years that they have got through the group stage of a tournament without being breached and they have only conceded once in the last 720 minutes.
Grealish set up Raheem Sterling’s winner against Czech Republic as England topped Group D
‘You say we have only two goals, but also you’ve got to remember we haven’t conceded,’ he said.
‘A friend sent a little screenshot into my group chat saying the last time that was done by England was (1966) when we went through the group stages in a competition without conceding a goal.
‘It is something we can take great pride from. It is a brilliant achievement to go through the three games without conceding. It shows everything we have been working on, on the training field, has paid off. But, attacking-wise, we can still step it up. We have got so much talent, going forward especially.
‘We can score more goals. I wouldn’t mind getting my first goal, actually! I don’t know when that’s going to come along. I think I’m eight games in now, hopefully that comes soon. But, from the team’s point of view, I’m happy all day just assisting.’