The biggest omissions in Gareth Southgate’s squad announcement for England
Gareth Southgate has named his England squad for the upcoming European qualifiers against Italy and Ukraine later this month.
In his first squad since the World Cup, the England manager is sticking with the majority of the group that reached the quarter-finals in Qatar.
Ivan Toney was selected despite being charged by the FA Cup for breaching his betting rules, but some shock names were left out.
Here are some of the biggest failings of the Southgate squad.
Trent Alexander Arnold
The right-back was dropped due to his poor form at club. Alexander-Arnold has been among his best performances at Liverpool this season and Reece James is returning from injury, along with Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier.
“I’ve always spoken clearly to all the players about their strengths and what they can improve on,” Southgate said when asked about Alexander-Arnold’s absence. “In the past we may have taken more players in that position, but at this point in the season we’re careful not to take too many, especially if they’re not going to play.”
The Arsenal defender played a key role in Mikel Arteta’s title challenge but was not called up in the squad. White left England’s World Cup camp in Qatar halfway through the tournament for “personal reasons” and was not re-elected as Premier League leaders despite his club form. “It’s similar with Trent and Ben, the three guys that come in at right-back, we’ve got them ahead of those two,” Southgate said. “We are blessed in this position.”
Southgate explained that Sterling was unfit and would have been selected had he been. The forward is expected to miss Saturday’s Chelsea game against Everton through injury.
Sterling’s injury might have opened up a spot for one of the Premier League’s most stable players but Watkins was not selected. The Aston Villa forward couldn’t have done more with seven goals in his last eight games but he’s missing out on a recall.
Likewise, the Brighton player is in the form of his life in Roberto De Zerbi’s top-flight side. March has represented England youth teams but missed out on a senior call-up. Southgate said Marcus Rashford, Phil Foden, Jack Grealish and Bukayo Saka were ahead of him.
The centre-back has been a Southgate favorite in recent years due to his presence in the English camp. The Everton defender was part of the squad traveling to Qatar but was left out this time.
The AC Milan defender excelled in defeating Tottenham in the Champions League round of 16 but was overlooked. Coady’s place was taken by Crystal Palace defender Marc Guehi.
The winger was released by Manchester United after missing out on the World Cup but returned to find new form under Erik ten Hag with goals against Leeds and Leicester last month. However, given the battle for forward spots, Sancho needs to do more to return to the English league.
The Newcastle striker was out of shape and is one of the players who made the plane to Qatar and was not called up by Southgate. Wilson has scored just one goal for Newcastle since the World Cup, while Toney has scored six goals in 11 games for Brentford.
The Southampton captain has been the victim of several near misses when it comes to England. With Ward-Prowse in a relegation battle with Southampton, he misses again despite the likes of Mason Mount, Conor Gallagher and Kalvin Phillips having less playing time with Chelsea and Manchester City respectively.
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/england-squad-alexander-arnold-sterling-white-b2302235.html The biggest omissions in Gareth Southgate’s squad announcement for England