Eric Dier has dismissed concerns over his fitness despite being spotted at England’s first training session after arriving in Russia with heavy strapping on his left leg.
The midfielder is vying with Jordan Henderson for a starting place in Gareth Southgate’s team - with the likelihood that just one holding player will be used - for the opening Group G fixture against Tunisia next Monday.
With Marcus Rashford having sat out the session with a knee problem - the Football Association continued to insist that it is a “minor knock” suffered on Monday - the focus was on Dier although he dismissed wearing the strapping as nothing more than a “superstition”.
READ MORE: Infantino to stand for re-election
READ MORE: Iran boss demands apology from Nike
“It is just a superstition more than anything now,” Dier said. “It’s just because I’ve had a problem with my leg and it’s cleared up now. But I was wearing the strapping before and I just haven’t stopped wearing it yet. I will eventually.”
The issue with Dier is believed to have been a historic groin problem, which has cleared up, and he took a full part in training during an open session at England’s training ground at Zelenogorsk.