At the Euro finals, Tyrone Mings believes England must master the “black arts.”
Tyrone Mings says England must be streetwise in the European Championship to compete against opposing nations who are “masters of the dark arts.”
The Aston Villa defender might start England’s Euro 2020 opener against Croatia on Sunday at Wembley.
Mings, 28, earned his tenth cap in Sunday’s 1-0 warm-up win over Romania, and with Harry Maguire’s fitness doubts, he could keep his spot this weekend.
Mings suggested that England should sometimes breach the line when it comes to upholding the rules after being caught on tape punching Austria striker Sasa Kalajdzic with his forearm in a friendly last week.
“Football is pretty soft these days, you can’t get away with much,” Mings stated when asked if there is something to be said for being streetwise.
“Like you said, if there had been VAR, I would have definitely given away a penalty.
“I’ve done that many times in my career as a defender. Block the striker when a cross is ready to be delivered. That isn’t a violation of the rules. However, that one (on Kalajdzic) was maybe a little too forceful.
Being street smart is an important component of the game.
“However, street smarts are an important element of the game. Other countries are experts of the dark arts, lingering on the floor for longer than necessary and delaying restarts.
“Being streetwise can also push you over the edge since it agitates your opponents and disrupts their flow and rhythm.”
Mings defended his actions in the Kalajdzic incident, claiming that if VAR had been in use during the friendly at Riverside Stadium, he would not have been caught out.
When asked if he was lucky the clash went missed by the authorities, he replied, “Not lucky, no, since I knew there wasn’t VAR.”
When it was put to him that he would have been sent off if it had happened in a match at the Euros, Mings added: “Yeah but it wasn’t, was it, so we can go back through many. (This is a brief piece.)