Liverpool star Nathaniel Clyne ​has backed England’s squad to pull together in a ‘relaxed’ environment at the World Cup, ahead of their first game on Monday night. 

Speaking to the ​Standard, Clyne backed the Three Lions to pull together in Gareth Southgate’s preferred formation with three at the back after a number of Premier League clubs adopted the system over the last 18 months. 

The Reds right-back was overlooked for a place in Southgate’s 23-man squad in favour of his club teammate Trent Alexander-Arnold, but backed England to perform well in the system in his absence. 

He said: “It is important, when you’re setting out a formation or style of play everyone has got to be comfortable with it and as you can clearly see with the games we’ve played with that formation, everyone has been comfortable, everyone knows their roles and jobs. 

“A lot of players in the squad play in clubs where they play with three or five at the back, we’ve done really well with that formation and hopefully that pays off in the tournament.“That adds confidence, definitely, when everyone knows their roles and jobs having been trained in that formation.”

The 27-year-old added: “As a player you want to be in a relaxed environment where you can enjoy it. Football is all about enjoying it, when you can relax and have fun with the boys without having that pressure. That is the main thing. 

“They are already getting pressure when their on the field, so they don’t need it off it and hopefully it can help when it comes to the tournament phase.”