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Big pressure on England kids, says Slovakia coach

Football Soccer - Euro 2016 - Slovakia Training Session - Futur Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France - 10/6/16 - Slovakia's coach Jan Kozak attends a training session. REUTERS/Albert Gea
Football Soccer - Euro 2016 - Slovakia Training Session - Futur Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France - 10/6/16 - Slovakia's coach Jan Kozak attends a training session. REUTERS/Albert Gea

By Ed Dove

BORDEAUX, France, (Reuters) - Slovakia coach Jan Kozak believes there is "big pressure" on Group B rivals England to perform at the European Championship in France.

Speaking on the eve of his side's opening game on Saturday against Wales in Bordeaux, Kozak said he was fascinated to see how England's youthful squad, the youngest at the tournament, would cope with expectations.

"Regarding the group...favourites are England, they have a squad of top quality players," he told reporters.

"There's big pressure on the young English players. I'm curious to see how they'll cope with it."

Only four squad members remain from Roy Hodgson's Euro 2012 group, with the manager having turned to precocious talents such as Marcus Rashford and Dele Alli in a bid to improve on a dismal World Cup showing in Brazil two years ago.

"With regards to the other teams in our group I think it will be very even," Kozak said.

"Russia, Wales and Slovakia each have their own qualities and it will depend on their form on the day. I don't see any big differences."

(Editing by Tony Jimenez)

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