Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold, who withdrew from the last England squad due to injury, has been left out of the 26-man squad, with Southgate citing right-back as a “remarkable position of strength”.
“There’s some areas of the pitch where we’ve got incredible competition for places. Trent is very unfortunate,” said Southgate, whose side kick off their World Cup qualifying campaign against San Marino, Albania and Poland.
“I don’t think he has played at the level that he found in the last couple years, but I think he’s getting very close to that now. The last few weeks he has taken steps in the right direction.
England manager Gareth Southgate says the competition at right back is ‘incredible’ after he leaves Trent Alexander-Arnold out of his squad.
England manager Gareth Southgate says the competition at right back is ‘incredible’ after he leaves Trent Alexander-Arnold out of his squad
“It’s simply that we think Reece James and Kieran Trippier have had exceptional seasons really with their clubs, Kyle Walker is in great form with Manchester City. We’ve got other players in the league who are also playing well in that position – (Matty) Cash at Villa and (Luke) Ayling at Leeds.
“It’s a remarkable position of strength. What I said to Trent earlier today, I’ve made those calls to Kyle (Walker) and Kieran (Trippier) in the past, their response was a good one and they took up the challenge and found themselves back in the squad.
“Trent is of course a super talent, I’m certain he’ll play a big part for England in the future. He misses out this time but we could quite conceivably be sitting here before the summer and he’s with us.”