England midfielder Eric Dier believes the stream of young players coming into the international fold is helping to keep the more established names on their toes.
The Three Lions played out a goalless draw in their Nations League meeting with Croatia in Rijeka on Friday night in a match which took place behind closed doors.
Borussia Dortmund forward Jadon Sancho came off the bench in the closing stages to make his England debut – the first man to do so who was born this millennium.
Meanwhile 21-year-old left-back Ben Chilwell made his first start and fellow youngsters Mason Mount and James Maddison were on the bench.
A youthful England side created the better chances in the game on the Adriatic coast, with Dier and Tottenham team-mate Harry Kane hitting the woodwork and Marcus Rashford spurning two marvellous chances.
Dier was pleased to see yet another batch of precocious talent come into the squad and feels that it motivates the more senior players to keep improving.
“I feel like the performance was really positive on the whole,” he said.
“Obviously there are a lot of young players in the squad looking to get their chance and keeping everyone on their toes.
“Jadon Sancho, when he came on, I think he was really positive and had a really positive impact, was brave and took people on and that is what you want from young players.”
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