By Sam Stone

9th Dec, 2022 | 7:40am

Roshane Thomas details 'important' Paul Nevin impact as West Ham United coach gears up for France showdown

Paul Nevin is having an “important” background influence on the England squad as the West Ham coach helps prepare the Three Lions ahead of their clash with France.

Nevin is currently out in Qatar with Gareth Southgate’s men after taking up the role in August 2021, replacing Graeme Jones, who stepped down to turn his full-time attention to Newcastle United.

The England boss called David Moyes to gain the Scot’s full approval before Nevin accepted the offer from the Football Association.

The Athletic’s Roshane Thomas has detailed (latest column, 9 December) how morale is high in the England camp due to the planning and preparation the likes of Nevin are currently involved in behind-the-scenes.

Always West Ham

It feels like an unwritten rule that any success which comes England’s way has to have some West Ham involvement. The Three Lions have a genuine chance of winning the World Cup, with the game against France feeling like a significant moment in the tournament.

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Much of the talk before the game has centred around stopping Kylian Mbappe, but there are plenty of other significant battles which will be taking place all over the pitch. Ousmane Dembélé up against Luke Shaw will be an intriguing contest and how Declan Rice deals with Antoine Griezmann will be vital in deciding the outcome of the game.

England have received a huge boost with Sky Sports’ England correspondent Rob Dorsett revealed (via Twitter, 8 December) that Rice was involved in training after missing a session earlier in the week with an illness.

The West Ham captain is absolutely vital for Southgate’s side and having him available is a simply massive boost heading into what is a massive test against France.