John Stones says England have learned from their last win over Germany and defeat to Iceland
By Allan Valente
Last Updated: 21/03/17 4:35pm
John Stones says England have learned from their last encounter against Germany as well as their Euro 2016 exit to Iceland.
England came from 2-0 down to beat the world champions 3-2 in Berlin in March last year ahead of their ill-fated European Championships which ended with defeat in Nice and prompted the resignation of Roy Hodgson shortly after the final whistle against Iceland.
Gareth Southgate will take charge of his first match as full-time boss when England take on Germany again in Dortmund in a friendly on Wednesday following an interim spell at the helm and Stones says the side must use both the positives and negatives from the past year if they are to progress.
"I think we can take a lot from it, negatives and positives, in both ways," he told Sky Sports News HQ.
"We are here, a few manager changes, we have got Gareth and he is trying to put his stamp on it and look back to what has happened in the past, which I think is vital.
"We don't just want to forget it; we want to learn from it and move on and hopefully get better from those experiences, both as a team and as individuals."
Stones, who is in line to win his 16th cap against Germany, has hit back at critics who claim he has struggled to adapt to Pep Guardiola's playing style at Manchester City since his £47.5m move from Everton last summer.
"I'm trying to learn all the time, every day off of Pep at City and try to bring those qualities and things I've learned when we play week in-week out to England and obviously Gareth wants us to, and has wanted me in the past, to play out and be a defender first and foremost.
"I'm learning every day and I want to come here and learn some new things as well off the manager now he has got the role and everyone else is doing the same thing.
"I think it is a healthy environment to be around when everyone is playing well at their club and deserves to be here. Go and show the manager what you can do and he'll give you a few words on what he wants from you as well, which is a great learning experience for me and all the lads."
After the friendly with Germany the focus for England players will switch to World Cup qualifying duty when they host Lithuania at Wembley in their Group F clash on Sunday, and Stones says no one will be taking the game lightly.
"I think you can't underestimate any team, whatever game you are going into," he said. "When you are a kid you learn those sorts of qualities, whoever you play you've got to prepare well and make sure you are on it.
"The world champions in the first game and then Lithuania at Wembley, which is a massive game to qualify for the World Cup. On the other hand, a big game in Germany that is watched by everyone, a lot at stake and one we will relish and hopefully get a good result there and take it in to the next one at Wembley."
Stones says he feels right at home away on international duty with England and even more so now that former Under-21 team-mates James Ward-Prowse and Nathan Redmond have joined him in the senior squad.
"Definitely, even before the boys came up from the U21s, it was a great place to be around, very lively, enjoy everyone's company which I think is vital off the pitch," he said.
"People don't see that side of it but to come away with your national team and feel so at home is a massive factor in playing for England. Some of the boys have come up from the U21s and it is nice to see some more familiar faces."