Latest England Squad Selection
On Thursday the 30th of August Gareth Southgate named his squad for the upcoming fixtures against Andorra and Hungary and the betting odds suggest that England should be winning both games comfortably.
Southgate’s England squad selection when announced raised the eyebrows of football fans up and down the country causing many to have questions.
The England manager has recently had to reconsider his squad selection due to Recce James and Kalvin Phillips who were both originally in the squad withdrawing due to injury.
The withdrawal of these 2 made way for the call-up of Chelsea fullback Ben Chilwell and Southampton midfielder James Ward Prowse to the national squad.
Southgate also made a late decision to call up Tammy Abraham as a result of his impressive form since his permanent move to AS Roma and you wouldn’t back against him finding the net in one of these two qualifiers if he’s given the opportunity.
Since his move to Italy, Abraham has put his name back into the conversation of the top strikers for the nation, scoring 4 goals already this season.
Ramsdale gets England squad selection
The selection of Goalkeepers also created a bit of debate.
The inclusion of Aaron Ramsdale instead of Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope has had several people questioning whether this was the correct decision or not.
Since his £30m move to Arsenal from Sheffield United Ramsdale has become Arsenal’s number 1.
The choice of leaving Nick Pope out of the squad was explained by Southgate he said ‘Nick has had a tough start to the season and we feel that he is still recovering from the injury that ruled him out of the euros squad.’
Southgate then went on to explain the ability of Ramsdale to play out from the back compared to the one of Nick Pope is another reason why he selected the Arsenal man.
Also, the inclusion of Sam Johnstone has been questioned as Johnstone is currently playing in a Championship side and it is well known that Southgate has previously said that when playing in the Championship it’s tough to be picked, so why is it now he’s selecting Championship players over Premier League players playing every week?
When it came to selecting defenders the England boss had a few decisions to make as injuries to players such as Harry Maguire and Trent Alexander Arnold ruled them out of the thinking.
This paved the way for former Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori, who is currently playing his football for AC Milan.
Since his move from London to Milan, Tomori has played a total of 31 times and during his time in Milan, he has shown the quality he has in both the Italian league and also in European competitions, most recently against Liverpool at Anfield.
Southgate bizarrely had Reece James in the original England squad selection.
This lead to some confusion around the Chelsea camp, Thomas Tuchel in his first press conference after the announcement said ‘When I saw the news I thought Reece has been called up for the national water polo team because has been doing his training in water due to injury so, therefore, there must have been confusion and he will not join up with his international side.’
James then later withdrew from the squad paving the way for his Chelsea teammate Ben Chilwell.
Chilwell heads to St George’s Park on the back of starting in Chelsea’s most recent fixture against Southampton, in a game which he managed to get on the score sheet.
The midfield selection also raised a few eyebrows when announced.
No Bellingham England Squad call up this time...
The exclusion of 18 years old superstar Jude Bellingham was one of if not the main talking points of the whole squad selection. If you were a betting man, you’d have thought he would have been most certainly odds on to be included in this squad this time around.
Southgate justified his decision to leave out Bellingham saying ‘He is only a young player who is playing often at the top level week in week out in the Bundesliga and Champions League so therefore we think it is important to look after him and by leaving him out gives him a rest but he is definitely in our plans for the future.’
Since making the move from his beloved Birmingham City to German giants Borussia Dortmund, Bellingham has made 57 appearances managing 6 goals and 9 assists.
He has ONLY just turned 18!
This squad announcement saw the reappearance of Manchester City’s Phil Foden for the first time since the European Championships.
Foden missed the final against the Italians because of an ankle injury which ruled him out for a longer period than first expected.
As a result, he missed out on the last squad but has been renamed in Southgate’s side and showed the England fans why he should be back in the squad in his previous performance against Liverpool.
Foden caused James Milner all types of problems at Anfield, his excellent performance was topped off with a goal and a man of the match award.
James Ward Prowse has been recalled to the side as a result of England’s player of the year, Kalvin Phillips withdrawing due to a calf strain suffered in Leeds United’s last Premier League fixture.
Ward Prowse is back in the squad for the first time since being in the provisional squad for the Euros before being left out of the final squad that Southgate named.
Another player who was left out of the Euro England squad selection but has since been a regular in squads is Manchester United player Jesse Lingard.
Despite his lack of playing time at the minute, there is no denying the talent and ability that Jesse brings to any squad that he is involved in.
The arrival of Ronaldo and Sancho to Manchester has forced Lingard to be an impact player from the bench and when called upon he has delivered and scored 2 goals in the league this season and was the provider for Ronaldo’s late winner against Villareal in the Champions League.
The attacking options at the disposal of Southgate are any manager’s dream. Regardless of who the boss picks there are always going to be conversations and questions asked as to why a certain player has or has not been selected.
This was the case this time around with Mason Greenwood, The Manchester United forward has bagged 3 goals this season from the wide areas of the pitch. Many believe the inclusion of Greenwood is a must.
However similar to Bellingham, Southgate has stated that Mason is in his plans but due to the high amount of games being played at such a young age, these players must be looked after.
Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling were odds-on for this England squad selction as their records in an England shirt speak for themselves.
Another eyebrow-raiser was the inclusion of Ollie Watkins who like Lingard and Ward Prowse missed out on the opportunity to play at the Euros but have now made their way back into the squad.
Watkins, when selected had 0 premier league goals to his name and was looking for full match fitness because of an injury at the start of the season.
However in the fixture before the break and after his call up, Watkins scored for Villa against Tottenham and this will only increase his confidence ahead of his time away with the National side.
Whichever squad Southgate chose this time around, they should always have enough to beat the likes of lowly Andorra and Hungary and for those betting on these two qualifiers, you certainly can’t be backing the match odds markets given England are huge odds-on for both qualifiers.