The Blues attacking midfielder grew up admiring his Croatian counterpart and looks back on this episode, on the eve of England-Croatia.
Mason Mount will face Luka Modric once again in England’s first Euro 2020 game against Croatia and the Chelsea midfielder is eager to face one of his biggest idols.
As a youngster at Chelsea academy, Mount admired players like Modric and former FC Barcelona legend Andres Iniesta while following his own path to the top of world football.
Now a confirmed player at Chelsea, Mount played a key role in his side’s victory over Real Madrid in the Champions League, with the Blues winning the competition in the final against Manchester City. Besides his medal, Modric’s jersey was also an important memory of his career in Europe.
“I have it at home, along with a few others. It’s always good to keep those special jerseys.”Mount told reporters from St. George’s Park.
“I spoke to Kovacic before the first game and asked if I could have his shirt later. I managed to do that and he asked for mine in the second game because I didn’t really get him. gave mine on the first one.
“Kova said he loved interacting with the players so he came over to tell me he wanted mine and just wished me luck for the next few games. It was great for me, obviously, to talk to him. and to see that he wanted my jersey, so I was pretty upset.
“He has always been a player that I admire. Since playing in the Premier League with Tottenham I have watched him very closely. Playing against him was weird because I had watched him so much that I had watched him. knew his movements and what he was going to do.
“It helps to be a fan of a player and to play against him because you know what he likes to do. The experience of playing against him helps because you want to be in those great games and learn how to handle the game. pressure and great moments.
“These two matches [contre le Real Madrid] have been very important in our journey and I have gained a lot of experience from those two games. “
Gareth Southgate is likely to rely heavily on the 22-year-old midfielder throughout this upcoming tournament, having him play in almost every game over the past 12 months.
Mount has played in midfield and as a striker for England and he will likely adapt his roles to the different opponents the Three Lions will face. Indeed, he is comfortable in different roles, having gone through the Chelsea academy who likes to produce versatile footballers.
“I think if you look at the amount of attacking talent we have in the squad, that speaks for itself, he added. We have players who can handle the ball, keep the ball and play with the ball, create chances and be a threat for the future.
“It’s something that we always try to perfect. It will never be 100% perfection, you know in a game there will be times when things don’t fall into place, but with the players that we have and what we’ve been working on in training, I’m hopeful that will work out.
“We are going to play together and we are going to come to an agreement when the game arrives, that is what we are focusing on and I hope it will happen.”
He went on to say that his team can win glory this summer. “We have never won a Euro before so we are a very hungry team”, he concluded.
“We want to create a story that no one has ever done before and I feel that with this group, with this young group, we can do it and we know what we can do.”