Kyle Walker sends warning to Kylian Mbappe ahead of England vs France | Football
Kyle Walker has warned Kylian Mbappe England won’t be ‘rolling out the red carpet’ as the Three Lions full-back prepares for one of the most daunting tests in world football.
The 32-year-old’s return to fitness has represented a welcome boost to Gareth Southgate, who took a gamble on the Manchester City star after he underwent an operation on a groin injury back in October.
Walker returned to the starting line-up for the 3-0 win over Wales in the group stage and retained his place as England booked their place in the last eight with another commanding display against Senegal.
Walker and England are set to face an altogether difference challenge on Saturday, however, with Mbappe desperate to cement his reputation as the best player in the world on current form.
The PSG striker has dazzled in Qatar already and currently leads the race for the coveted Golden Boot with five goals from four appearances thus far.
Walker is well aware of the examination he is set to face but is confident Mbappe won’t have it all his own way.
Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, he told reporters: ‘Obviously it’s always going to help because I’ve played against him a few times.
‘But he’s a great player in great form so it’s not going to be an easy task. But as a professional you want to play against the best players and he is one of the best players in the world.
‘Of course I understand the focus and I understand what I need to do to stop him. It’s easier said than done but I don’t underestimate myself.
‘I’ve come up against some of the best players in the world but I have to treat it just as another game. You have to give him respect but not too much.
‘Yes it will be a tough game but a team cannot just be about one person.
‘I’m not going to roll out a red carpet for him and tell him to score. It’s a World Cup, it’s do or die.
‘I’m not going home so I’m not going to let him ruin that for my family.’
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