Southgate’s surprising snub from England’s World Cup qualifiers squad

There has been mixed reaction from fans as Gareth Southgate names the much anticipated England squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

Several players miss out on the squad through injury. Leicester City duo James Maddison and Harvey Barnes have been sidelined in recent weeks, while wingers Jadon Sancho and Jack Grealish are also unavailable.

Regular number one Jordan Pickford misses out after being substituted early against Burnley, while Jordan Henderson and Joe Gomez remain long-term absentees.

Jesse Lingard has earned a recall to the England setup following an impressive loan spell at West Ham United. John Stones and Luke Shaw also return to the squad.

The most notable omission from the squad is Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold. Southgate has confirmed that this was a decision based on his form.

“I don’t think he’s played at the level he’s been at during the last few years,” said Southgate, as quoted by James Pearce. “He’s a big talent, and I’m sure he will play a big role for England in the future.”

Man United’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka also misses out with Reece James, Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier selected instead.

Patrick Bamford also misses out, following rumours that he was set to be handed his first call-up. The Leeds United man is the Premier League’s fifth top scorer, netting 13 goals.

Full England squad for March’s World Cup qualifiers

Goalkeepers: Dean Henderson (Man United), Sam Johnstone (West Brom), Nick Pope (Burnley)

Defenders: Ben Chilwell (Chelsea), Conor Coady (Wolves), Eric Dier (Tottenham), Reece James (Chelsea), Harry Maguire (Man United), Tyrone Mings (Aston Villa), Luke Shaw (Man United), John Stones (Man City), Kieran Trippier (Atletico Madrid), Kyle Walker (Man City)

Midfielders: Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Phil Foden (Man City), Jesse Lingard (West Ham, loan from Man United), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Kalvin Phillips (Leeds United), Declan Rice (West Ham), James Ward-Prowse (Southampton)

Forwards: Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Marcus Rashford (Man United), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Raheem Sterling (Man City), Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa)

The Three Lions will get their World Cup qualification campaign underway with a home tie with everyone’s favourite underdogs, San Marino, on 25 March, before jetting off to face Albania three days later.

Southgate’s men must then switch their attention to Robert Lewandowski and the rest of his Poland teammates, who are scheduled to turn out at Wembley Stadium on 31 March.

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