With the Premier League campaign reaching its final stretch, all eyes will soon turn to this summer’s delayed European Championships.
Watching England opening their World Cup qualifying campaign with victories against San Marino, Albania and Poland, many have started to speculate who could be in Gareth Southgate’s 23-man squad.
Although there might remain a question mark over who could start between the sticks for England’s opening contest against Croatia at Wembley on June 13th, some stars appear in a real battle to even be rewarded with a spot.
With Southgate admitting that he has had initial talks with some big names who could be set to miss out, we have taken a look at a handful of heavyweight players who could be spending the summer at home.
Trent Alexander-Arnold – Liverpool
Undoubtedly the notable name that was left out of Southgate’s squad for England’s World Cup qualifiers last month, the debate surrounding Trent Alexander-Arnold’s inclusion has divided opinion.
Failing to build off of his display in Liverpool’s 3-0 win away at Arsenal last weekend, The Reds’ homegrown star had a disastrous night while on Champions League duties out in Madrid on Tuesday.
Struggling to match a similar level that saw him help Liverpool lift their first Premier League title last season, many feel that Southgate will once again overlook the 22-year-old in his squad later this year.
With it appearing that Manchester City’s Kyle Walker is still Southgate’s number one choice to start at right-back, the likes of Reece James and 2018 hero Kieran Trippier are also in contention.
Jadon Sancho – Borussia Dortmund
While Jadon Sancho might still be regarded as one of Europe’s hottest young talents, the Borussia Dortmund star currently appears to find himself from the outside looking in at Southgate’s squad.
Missing March’s international fixtures and also BVB’s 2-1 defeat at Manchester City on Tuesday night, the 21-year-old has struggled with a muscle injury over the past month after a hugely bright start to 2021.
Nevertheless, despite enjoying a run of form that saw him record six goals in his final eight appearances before picking up his injury, Southgate might have his eyes elsewhere.
With it looking like Manchester United ace Marcus Rashford will almost certainly feature in England’s 23-man squad this summer, the emergence of Jack Grealish could also cost Sancho his place.
Eric Dier – Tottenham
Although Eric Dier might have famously bagged that winning penalty against Colombia out in Russia almost three years ago, the Tottenham star could be destined for an unwanted break this summer.
Despite being called up to Southgate’s squad for England’s World Cup qualifiers last month, the one-time Sporting Lisbon starlet didn’t play a single minute and is heavily tipped to miss out on another call-up.
Struggling with his form at Spurs this season and once again finding himself out of Jose Mourinho’s starting XI in North London, Dier has not featured since Tottenham’s stunning 3-0 defeat away at Dinamo Zagreb on March 18th.
Competing with the likes of Tyrone Mings and Conor Coady for a spot among Southgate’s defenders, the arrival of Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips might prove to be too much competition for the 27-year-old.
Danny Ings – Southampton
Although Danny Ings might have marked his return from his latest set back with a goal against former employers Burnley last weekend, the one-time Liverpool striker is another Premier League star who appears likely to miss out this summer.
Despite finding the net in a friendly meeting against Wales when called up to Southgate’s squad back in October, the 28-year-old missed March’s internationals with yet another injury issue.
With Southgate likely to only select one deputy for Harry Kane’s role up top, Aston Villa’s Ollie Watkins certainly took his chance last month and the emergence of Dominic Calvert-Lewin could be a critical blow to Ings’ chances.
Gaining a string of admirers under Carlo Ancelotti at Everton this season, Calvert-Lewin has already recorded 14 Premier League strikes this campaign and appears to be sat in pole position.
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