Does life on this small island seem insular, particularly when the political landscape has shifted dramatically since he arrived? “I’ve heard it said that English people are not looking outwards but I don’t see it. I live in Formby and work in Liverpool. I drive from here to there and sometimes I’m in different cities for games. So I don’t know enough about the country but many people come to Britain because English is the language the world speaks.
“I can’t say Germany is more open. If you ask the wrong people in Germany they would say: ‘Yes, we want a fence to keep foreigners out and, by the way, could you make is as high as the [Berlin] Wall.’ Europe has been strange the last few years. I like to go to Austria for skiing but they only push [immigrants] through to Mrs Merkel.