Following their outstanding performance so far in the world cup, it has been revealed that the England national team trained with the Marines to prepare for the tournament.
Incredible unseen footage released today shows the England squad training with the Royal Marines.
England boss Gareth Southgate whisked the team away last year for a weekend roughing it in the woods with battle-hardened Commandos.
The incredible 48 hours has been credited for forging a new sense of togetherness that has carried England’s history boys to their first World Cup semi-final in a generation.
Southgate, 47, revealed how he stripped his squad of their phones for TWO days and forced them to wear fatigues during the training weekend in June.
The young team was put through their paces by elite Marine PT instructors helping to bond the squad.
Southgate said: “I wanted everyone to get to know each other better.
“They all wore Royal Marine uniform so there was no hierarchy
“We all camped together and no one had a better tent than anyone else.”
Gareth told of how Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, and Co became “emotional” at having shared the same experiences as the battle-hardened troops.
He said: “We had some really powerful conversations with the Marines.
“And what it meant for those guys to represent Queen and country.
“We are in the same position.
“What impact we can have on them when we are the Three Lions.
“It was emotional.
“And so there was an incredible bond between the team in such a short space of time.”
The video showed the boys being put through rigorous exercises and eating rations as part of the leadership test.
In tough training, the England team were also dunked under water and made to finish a course involving an underwater tunnel.
The Afghan veterans were given the job of instilling the footballers with the Commando spirit of “courage, determination, cheerfulness, and unselfishness”.
Referring to his team and the Marines during a night-vision exercise, Sterling said: “We are all Three Lions.”
Gareth, who also took part in the training, said: “It provided us with so many opportunities to work in areas we are not always able to effect in a football sense.
“I wanted to take the guys somewhere where they weren’t sure of what was coming.
“We need our players to be adaptable and to be able to adjust under stress and in different environments.”
He added: “We want to learn from world-class people and the Royal Marines are a world-class organization.”
And the boys were so impressed by the elite team they exchanged personal numbers.
Sgt Keiron Prosser, 32, Cpl Ben Williams, 30, and Cpl Danny Bowcock, 26, from the Commando Training Centre at Lympstone Devon, have kept in touch.
Cpl Williams said: “We went through everything they did, we stripped it back to basics.
“Put people through adverse conditions together and you form a unity.
“The relationships have stayed as a friendship and we’ve communicated with them as we would our own friends.”
Sgt Prosser said: “We’re there for them.”