England star Ezri Konsa's life including childhood in 'proper rough' part of London

Ezri Konsa is starting for England at the Euros
-Credit: (Image: Stefan Matzke - sampics/Getty Images)

Ezri Konsa is preparing to make his first start of the Euros for England as the Three Lions take on Switzerland for the quarter finals. He slots into a back three alongside John Stones and Kyle Walker following Marc Guehi's suspension in the previous game.

This will arguably be the biggest game of the Aston Villa defender's career - but is a far cry from his humble begins in East London grassroots football. Growing up in Newham, he described his area as "proper rough" in an interview with The Athletic.

“You heard a lot about kids getting stabbed and things like that so football helped me, 100 per cent," he said. His passion for football developed when he started out at Senrab FC.

READ MORE: England star Eberechi Eze's life from growing up in 'not so nice part' of London to getting married at 23

Ezri Konsa said football helped him escape difficulties growing up in East London
Ezri Konsa said football helped him escape difficulties growing up in East London -Credit:Joe Prior/Visionhaus via Getty Images

Situated in the shadow of West Ham's former stadium Upton Park, it might appear like any other Sunday league club in East London. But it's fair to say Senrab FC has a reputation for developing some of England's greatest players.

John Terry began his career there, while its turf was also graced by Ray Wilkins, Sol Campbell and Jermain Defoe before they went to enjoy incredible careers. Following this, Konsa signed for Charlton Athletic aged 11 after impressing academy coaches in South London.

The centre back made good on his potential and eventually broke into Charlton's first team squad eventually making 71 appearances. He then made the trip across London to Brentford in 2018 for a season, before eventually being signed for Aston Villa where he has made 163 appearances.

Now aged 26, Konsa has gone on to define himself as a sold Premier League defender before going on to make his England debut earlier this year. He might've come a long way since his humble beginnings in East London, but Konsa has leant back on his past throughout his career.

John Terry, who played for Senrab FC in his youth, mentored Konsa while he was on the coaching staff at Aston Villa. "John and I did a lot of one-to-one sessions, looking at different parts of my game," Konsa said at the time.

"I asked him questions on what I need to do to improve, what I need to do to stay at the highest level and maintain a good mentality. After watching my clips with him, his main advice is to train hard, keep your training standards high and it will come back on the pitch."

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