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Praet: “I was shocked by the training that Witsel has already reached such a high level” |  European Football Championship 2020

Praet: “I was shocked by the training that Witsel has already reached such a high level” | European Football Championship 2020

Dennis Praet played fifteen minutes against Russia. “I had to try to convince the team to play football and when I lost the ball I became the third man in midfield. We didn’t want to concede any more. It worked out really well,” he looked back with relief.

He had a difficult season with his team, Leicester City. “After my injury, I didn’t play much anymore so I was a bit afraid for my place of choice. But once I got here I worked a little extra to get at the best level. I needed to.”

“It’s not just the starting line-up. Thomas Meunier has shown that too. We all have to be ready.”

“The five substitutes would probably be an advantage for the bench. The desire is so great to play more, but I’m happy with the minutes. For me it was the first minutes in a major tournament.”

Has my position on the team changed? “I’ve had a few minutes playing with the national team recently. I think the national coach trusts me. I do my best in training and I’m happy with the opportunities I have.”

The competition in midfield will soon increase again. “I know there are players who have come back who are very important and I am behind the team that will play.”

It’s of course about Kevin De Bruyne and Axel Witsel. “It’s a boost for them to come back. We played well against Russia without them, and it feels good. It can only get better.”

According to Praet, they’re ready, too. “I was shocked in my first training with Witsel because he was already so far. I think he’s ready. He showed that in training. He’s very strong and smart after this injury.”

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“I haven’t trained with De Bruyne yet. But he’s played at a very high level for a whole year so I think we can expect that again. He looks very good.”

Dennis Bright on…

timothy chestnut: “He’s a good friend so it’s very unfortunate. He really wanted to be important to the Devils in this tournament. We’ve talked about that before. Maybe a miracle will happen and he can come back in the end.”

Dries Mertens hat number 100: “I’ve always been a good friend of him. He’s also a native of Leuven, so he’s definitely an example for me. He’s an icon in Naples and the national team.”

The match against Denmark: “It will be special. They will want to win for Eriksen and they will be very motivated. But we are. It is still a football match that we absolutely want to win. We are not going to work on it all the time on the field.”