‘If he wins the tournament’ – Ramsdale happy to sit behind Pickford and await ‘happiest day of my life’

Ciaran McCarthy
Aaron Ramsdale, Jordan Pickford, England
Aaron Ramsdale is happy to sit behind Jordan Pickford for England if he brings the Euros back

Aaron Ramsdale says he is happy to watch Jordan Pickford from the sidelines and see the Everton man do “incredibly well” as he’ll deliver the “happiest day of my life” if he wins England the Euros.

At one point not too long ago, it looked as if Ramsdale could have challenged Pickford’s spot in the England net. The Everton goalkeeper has been the incumbent for the last three major tournaments, and any important games between them.

Ramsdale, on the other hand, has played just five times, having debuted in 2021, and watched the 2022 World Cup from the bench.

But when he began to come good at Arsenal, Pickford might finally have had a challenger. Who knows what would have happened had Ramsdale kept his place in the Gunners net, but given he was usurped by David Raya, he’s had little chance to show he should be England’s No.1.

He is clear on the fact he does not want to sit on the sidelines forever at club level.

“No footballer wants to not play. I’ve had a tough year personally not playing and I never want to do that again,” he said.

“It was tough, it was tough.”

But he’s now on England duty ahead of a Euros tournament that the Three Lions are favourites for, and he does not mind sitting on the bench if he’s to watch Jordan Pickford help the side to the trophy.

“But I have my release now, I’m now here, I’ve got the greatest honour, the greatest badge on my chest, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if I play a minute or no minutes, it will be the pinnacle for me, the best day ever,” Ramsdale said.

“For the time being I’m probably one of the happiest 26, 27 men in England and hopefully we can make not just us but however many millions at home the happiest as well.

“I think Jordan has had the shirt and we’ve all been trying desperately hard for the past five years to get it off him and he’s done incredibly well.

“And if he gets the nod then I hope he does incredibly well again because if he wins the tournament for me and I don’t play a minute, it’ll be the happiest day of my life.”

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That said, Ramsdale wants to give him competition for the place, but would be supportive in any situation in the England squad.

“But what I would say is that squad numbers don’t always mean everything – we’re all fighting for the same goal, we’re all desperate to play. But then we also realise that it’s going to be a 26-man effort, 27 when you add Tom [Heaton] into it.

“But when you come to the national team, when you find your role, when you know your role, which Gareth is very good at speaking to you about, your mentality changes, I would do absolutely anything if he said I was No 3, No 4, No 1, I would do anything for the team, I’d be on the training pitch for four hours if I could.

“Competition is what we need, we don’t want 11 players who are going to pick itself, we want to give headaches to the staff, we can’t just rely on 11 players for seven games if you want to win the tournament.”

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