Martinez backs England to shine at World Cup

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England have a squad capable of enjoying a strong World Cup campaign in Russia, according to Belgium manager Roberto Martinez.

Roberto Martinez has backed Gareth Southgate's youthful England side to perform strongly at the World Cup in Russia.

Southgate has selected the third-youngest squad for the 2018 tournament , including uncapped teenager Trent Alexander-Arnold.

England's 23-man travelling party are lacking in World Cup experience with just 11 finals appearances among them, but Belgium manager Martinez expects their Group G rivals to impress on the global stage.

"I always followed England very closely," the former Everton boss told Omnisport.

"They are a group of players that now, with the good work of Gareth Southgate, have brought a group of young players he knew very well from his involvement with the under 21s.

"And then he's kept a really good mixture and has given the English team a real clear direction of players playing in a certain way that has allowed them to compete against the best in the world.

"So, I expect England to do really well at the World Cup.

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"They are in a really good moment to go into a tournament and carry on the winning feeling that St George's Park has brought to the national teams. 

"We've seen the success with the under 17s, the under 20s. I think it's something that we're going to see going through the senior level."

Belgium face in England in their final group game on June 28 in Kaliningrad. Tunisia and Panama are the other two nations in Group G. 

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