Prescott had players on “edge of their seats”, says McNamara

England head coach Steve McNamara has praised former deputy Prime Minister John Prescott for the impact his pre-match shirt presentation had on his group prior to Sunday’s win against New Zealand.

Prescott was chosen as the man to present the players with their shirts before the win in Hull at the weekend, and McNamara told the England website that he had the squad on the “edge of their seats” with his presentation.

“John Prescott had the players on the edge of their seats during the shirt presentation in terms of his presentation. He is an infectious man with a superb personality,” he said.

“He spoke about some serious things around making decisions under pressure, leadership and threw in some interesting stories. The balance of his speech really hit the mark with the players and the response from the group was what I was looking for.”

McNamara also praised his enthusiasm, saying it had an impact on everyone.

“John came to the dressing room after the game to see the lads and congratulate them on their win. We like to expose the players to people from different walks of life and he fit the bill perfectly for us. His enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone and we’ve definitely got a fan in him now.”