In pictures: Hungary v England
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England kept their cool commendably with their decisive response to the monkey chants and missiles in Budapest but they – unfortunately – are becoming old hands at this sort of thing.
It was the third time inside three years, after the incidents in Montenegro and Bulgaria, that England’s players had been subjected to face to face racist abuse on foreign soil.
Just as the other nations involved received stadium bans for their misbehaviour, England’s players want action taken against the Hungarians.
More than anything though they just want all this neanderthal nonsense to go away.
“We obviously have had it in the past and it is a disgrace how it keeps on happening,” said England midfielder Mason Mount.
“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.”
MUST READ: Raheem Sterling booed by Hungary fans and pelted with projectiles
Out of all football. Nobody should forget that it was predominantly English fans who racially abused England’s black players who had penalties saved in the Euros final less than two months ago online.
The racism at the Puskas Arena will be the primary focus of the FIFA investigation but the flare throwing and the avalanche of paper cups which rained down on England’s players as they celebrated Raheem Sterling’s opening goal will also be looked into.
“As soon as we scored with what happened in the corner flag, you could tell with the atmosphere that something was going to be thrown or something would happen. Luckily no-one got hurt,” said Mount.
Declan Rice, who had claimed before the Euros he had never drunk a pint of beer, and Jack Grealish picked up a cup each and pretended to drink from them.
It was a welcome moment of humour amid the hostility and showed an England side increasingly sure in its own skin.
“When the whole stadium is against us we grow,” said Mount. “As players we spoke about it.
“We knew it would be a hostile environment – but we revel in the opportunities. 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.
“We had a killer instinct in front of goal with the first and then, bang, in went the next three. It killed the game off and then gave them no hope.”
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Much was made of England’s home advantage during the Euros playing six of their seven games at Wembley but there was a palpable sense of wagons circling defiantly on the road in Budapest.
Mount continued: “I don’t think we have ever been scared of anything. Now we are growing in confidence.
“It is not over-confidence but we know what we have got in the team and obviously to come off a final and with what happened in the summer, this was a massive, massive game for us to put a stamp down that we are coming back stronger and with even more focus and a stronger desire to succeed.
“This was a massive win. We won’t take a breather. We have two more games this camp and we are ready to keep pushing.”
This is a tight group that is tighter still after the events of Thursday night.
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