Grealish reveals De Bruyne and Coutinho inspiration before England loss to Belgium

Jack Grealish England 2020
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The midfielder was devastated by the loss but delighted to make his start for the Three Lions

Jack Grealish was delighted to make his first competitive start for England despite the 2-0 defeat to Belgium on Sunday.

The Aston Villa captain made his fourth appearance for the Three Lions as they faced Roberto Martinez's men in the Nations League.

Youri Tielemans and Dries Mertens struck in the first half to seal the three points for the Rode Duivels.

Grealish, 25, admitted to watching videos of Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne and Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho to get him fired up for the game.

He said to  Sky Sports: "I absolutely loved it. This is what I have been waiting for, these are the games I have dreamed of. I have grew up all life wanting to play for England.

"We wanted to win tonight though so I am devastated we didn't get the win. I knew this was my chance to impress. These are the things I love, the pressure of wanting to do well.

"The last 24 hours I have been watching clips of my favourite players. I do that every game. I have been buzzing. I watch clips of Kevin De Bruyne, Philippe Coutinho - loads of players in my positions. I did it as a little kid and still do it today, that's what gets me going."

Grealish is still getting used to playing alongside his England team-mates, but he has been impressed by the "world class" figures around him as well as manager Gareth Southgate.

"The most difficult thing is trying to get the chemistry with the team-mates," he said.

"When you come here you only have 10 days to build that. It just clicks with some players though. The manager has been brilliant with me. There are world class players in my position."

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England are in action again on Wednesday when they host Iceland in the final match of the Nations League group stage. 

Southgate's side are third in League A Group 2, three points behind Denmark and five adrift of leaders Belgium, while Iceland are still pointless after five games.

Grealish's performance earned the praise of both Southgate and Cesc Fabregas after the match.

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