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England boosted by John Stones' return to training after illness

England fans will be relieved to know that key defender John Stones returned to training on Thursday after illness.

Gareth Southgate's side are preparing for Sunday's Euro 2024 Group C opener against Serbia in Gelsenkirchen.

Stones trained with the group in Jena on Tuesday having overcome an ankle knock that saw him withdrawn as a precaution midway through Friday's friendly defeat to Iceland. But the 30-year-old was conspicuous by his absence at Wednesday's session.

He was reportedly isolating with an unspecified illness but returned to Southgate's squad on Thursday, with all 26 players training at their Blankenhain base.

Meanwhile, Anthony Gordon has praised Stones for having an "elite mentality" and highlighted his importance in England's quest for Euro glory.

"He's got an elite mentality, so I've had faith in him. It's really important (to have everyone training).

"We want everyone as fit and healthy as possible going into the tournament so we can perform our best."

Luke Shaw has trained all week as he recovers from hamstring issues that have lain him low since mid-February.
 

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