Wales defender Ben Davies believes Tottenham team-mate Dele Alli will have to be on his best behaviour in Lens.
Alli made a huge impression in his first Premier League campaign last season, playing a key role in Tottenham’s title bid, breaking into the England team and being named PFA Young Player of the Year.
But the 20-year-old’s temperament has also been called into question, with Alli missing the final three games of Spurs’ season after punching West Brom midfielder Claudio Yacob in the stomach.
Spurs full-back Davies says he is a huge admirer of Alli, but admits he runs the risk of being caught up in the atmosphere of Euro 2016’s British derby at the Stade Bollaert-Delelis on Thursday.
“He has to be careful,” said Davies. “With what he has done this season people are going to be looking at him now, not just for the quality of his football but will be scrutinised for his behaviour as well.
“But that’s part and parcel of his game, it’s what makes him the player he is.
“If he didn’t have that fight in him then he probably wouldn’t be doing what he’s doing at 20 years of age.
“You can have a laugh about it after it’s happened but he’s probably been fortunate that it hasn’t affected his game.
“But he’s also won us games as well and we’re lucky at Spurs to have him.”
Alli won his ninth cap as England opened their Euro 2016 campaign with a 1-1 draw against Russia in Marseille on Saturday evening.
Just hours earlier Wales got their tournament off to a winning start with a 2-1 victory over Slovakia.
Those results have ramped up the pressure on England ahead of their first meeting with Wales since 2011.
“We’ve got players who play at the very top level on a regular basis so nothing should faze us,” said Davies. “I don’t think we can afford to think of ourselves as underdogs.
“People can say what they want and look at it whatever way they like, but we are a confident group and we’ll put every effort into doing well.”
England had five Spurs players in their starting line-up for the Russia game, including Danny Rose, Davies’ rival for the left-back spot at White Hart Lane.
But Davies believes that familiarity within the England team will not give them an advantage in Lens.
“There are 11 players on the field, not five. That’s the best way for us to look at it,” said Davies.
“We gelled pretty well throughout the qualifying with only one or two from the same team. I’m not too worried if they go down that route.
“If Chris Coleman (Wales manager) asks me about them I will speak, but there’s so much analysis done on players now that they will know as much as I do from the analysis which is done these days.
“The rise of these young players has changed things for England. We’ve seen them in games look like world-beaters, but it’s not a squad that we haven’t played against before.
“We’ve played top sides and done well. England are another top side and we will just have to do it again.”