WHEN that video came out of Wales celebrating our defeat by Iceland at Euro 2016, I was raging.
We’d been knocked out in the last 16, which was one of the lowest points of my career — and here they were dancing on our grave.
And, though I didn’t know it at the time, it turned out to be my last game for England.
What a way to go and how the Welsh rubbed it in.
A good friend of mine, Chris Senior, who worked with me at Arsenal and actually lived with me for a bit when he moved down from the north, was the Wales masseur and he’s still with them now.
I absolutely hammered him for the video but you can’t see him in the film — and he claimed that he didn’t join in.
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But when Wales won their quarter- final against Belgium they went into a huddle and he was right in the middle taking pictures — I hammered him again.
OK, so they had their fun, but then they can’t blame me for being delighted when they got knocked out by Portugal in the semis.
As an England group we never talked about the video after the game.
We were flying back the next day, lost in our own thoughts, but I’ve learned since that a lot of the players felt the same way as me.
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I wouldn’t say I think about it a lot — but when anyone brings it up, that Iceland result is still fresh in my head.
I came on for the second half when we were 2-1 down and felt we were in control, even though we were losing.
I was getting on the ball enjoying plenty of possession but it just went away from us.
You could feel the pressure coming down from the stands as the fans got more and more frustrated.
It’s not the way I want to remember my England career, so perhaps that Wales video is extra bitter for me.
I played against Wales for England at the Millennium Stadium early in my England days back in 2011.
It was a classic, competitive British battle.
When our national anthem was played, I couldn’t hear it for all the noise coming from their fans and thought to myself: “Oh my God, these people really hate us!”
It was quite intimidating, a strong hatred.
The reaction to that is you want to shut them up and we did, winning 2-0.
I want to see us do the same today — I believe we’ll win comfortably and send them home.
I understand the clamour to get the likes of Phil Foden and Jack Grealish in the team.
They have all the ability in the world and are two players who could probably get in the Spain team because they have as much technical ability as the likes of Gavi and Pedri.
But we are at our best when we’re playing full gas, running forward, putting the opponents under pressure and not giving them any peace.
We have to impose our personality, that’s what we’re good at.
It’s not in our nature to register 800-plus passes in a game the way that Spain do.
Our way is to get the ball forward quicker and this match will be like a Premier League side against a Championship one in a proper British cup tie.
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In situations like this, Foden and Grealish could get a bit lost if it becomes a physical battle.
That’s what Wales will want and even though they know they are almost certainly out of the competition, we have to make sure we match their fight and their passion for the battle.
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