England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford has confessed that he welcomes and enjoys the challenge of being pushed for the number one spot by Aaron Ramsdale and Nick Pope. The 28-year-old has been shown a lot of faith by Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate despite a dip in form over the years.
Ever since he earned his first cap for England in 2017, Jordan Pickford has been a key part of the Three Lions’ squad and has been the first choice for most of Gareth Southgate’s term. But that’s despite a dip in form after the 2018 World Cup, where many believed that Pickford should have been dropped for either Nick Pope or Dean Henderson. Those questions have been asked again after the Euro 2020 especially with Aaron Ramsdale’s recent rise.
But while the Arsenal goalkeeper has earned regular call-ups since becoming the Gunners’ No 1, Pickford has continued to keep his place for England. Yet the questions and inquisitions continue as to whether he should be replaced but the England No 1 admitted that “there’s always going to be debate” and that he enjoys being pushed for his place. Pickford also added that “there’s always good competition and always will be” but he wants to keep pushing himself to get even better because of that.
"There's always going to be debate and someone challenging you for your position. It's about performing for club and country, but you always want to be getting pushed. I enjoy those challenges, it strives me on to be number one for England for longer. You want other people playing well and pushing, when we train together we're pushing each other to get better and when you've got three lads training at their best, it's working well,” Pickford said, reported Sky Sports.
“[Ramsdale's] had a really good season, his first season at Arsenal, he's been unbelievable. But for me, it's about concentrating on myself, I know I've got to be at my best every day because you know you're going to have that competition every day with England and Everton too.
“You've got to keep pushing yourself and setting yourself targets to get better and better. Aaron is a great lad, we get on really well and it's the same with Popey too, so we've got a good group together. I think since I've been in the system with England, there's always been good competition.
“I was here with Joe Hart and Jack Butland in my first camp, there's always good competition and there always will be, but Ramsdale and Pope have both had very good seasons and it's good competition for me,” he added.