Roy Hodgson hits back at Gareth Bale
Roy Hodgson has labelled Gareth Bale “disrespectful” for saying that the Welsh side are more patriotic and have more "pride and passion" than their English opponents. England take on Wales in the Group B match on June 16th.
Hodgson said: “The fact is that receiving disrespectful comments is part and parcel of being a footballer and a football coach. “I’m pretty sure there will be lots of players going forward in opposing teams who have opinions about us, but we know who were are; we know what we are.”
England dropped points against Russia in the final minute of the game after Eric Dier’s stunning free-kick gave them the lead. Hodgson is still confident that England can easily make it through to the next round and has assured that the team spirit is still high. “We don’t have any doubts about ourselves in that respect and that’s the most important thing. It’s a tight dressing room. It’s a passionate dressing room. I would recommend anybody who does have any doubts about players in that respect to just watch the game with Russia and then come to me afterwards and tell me where they have seen that lack of passion and that lack of patriotism — because I certainly didn’t see it.
Commenting on Gareth Bale’s comment of Wales players having more patriotism and hunger than the English players, Hodgson said "I don’t have any doubts personally about our patriotism and our desire and that’s the most important thing. If he believes that’s the case then he’s welcome to that opinion. That’s what he feels, so I’m sure all us English players will feel different but he’s obviously a proud Welshman, which he should be.”
Hodgson has reaffirmed that all the English players are “It’s where he’s from and we’re from England and we’re very proud Englishmen. You have to be proud to play for your country. I’ve said it many times and I’m sure the other lads have said it many times. We are proud, otherwise we wouldn’t be here.”
England vs Wales was already set to be a very competitive match and these recent comments by Gareth Bale are set to make it more interesting.