Gareth Southgate has named England’s 26-man team for Euro 2020, and he has made a few unusual selections. England manager Gareth Southgate has previously named a 33-man provisional squad for two warm-up matches ahead of Euro 2020.
However, he has now reduced it to 26. Southgate was always going to have to make difficult decisions given the talent pool he was working with. Managers must set their own biases and feelings aside and hire people who will offer value and quality to the team.
BREAKING: Gareth Southgate has revealed his 26-man squad for England's #EURO2020 campaign, with four right-backs selected.
Full squad below…⬇
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) June 1, 2021
England has a diverse pool of talent from which to choose. Although the Premier League is full of incredibly gifted English players, several have failed to cut having successful individual seasons.
Without further ado, here are Gareth Southgate’s biggest blunders in picking the England squad for Euro 2020.
Southgate chooses four right-backs in England squad for Euro 2020
Gareth Southgate has included four right-backs in his Euro 2020 team, which is a strange decision. Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker, Reece James, and Trent-Alexander Arnold are the players he has chosen. All four players have been in excellent form recently, with the Liverpool right-back in particular excelling.
Kyle Walker and Reece James have both played in three-man defence situations. Southgate appears to be leaning toward a three-at-the-back formation. If that’s the case, wing-backs will be required. Trent-Alexander Arnold was most likely chosen for his midfield abilities, and he or Reece James might start wide.
Southgate goes for Big Names over Form
When it comes to his midfield and frontline, Gareth Southgate appears to have made some traditional choices. His midfield appears to contain a disproportionate number of defensive midfielders. Mason Mount is their lone attacking midfield option if Jack Grealish is used as a forward, as he has been listed in the Euro 2020 squad.
The exclusion of Ollie Watkins from the team is also shocking. In the second half of the season, Dominic Calvert-Lewin was unreliable as a goal scorer. Watkins, on the other side, had a strong finish to the 2020-21 campaign.
Harry Kane is superior to Calvert-Lewin at everything he does. In that regard, Ollie Watkins is unique. He’s a unique offering because of his movement and pace. Including him in the squad would have given England’s offence additional dynamism.
Lack of Experience in Midfield
If you take Jordan Henderson out of the equation, England’s midfield is young and inexperienced. Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham, Mason Mount, and Kalvin Phillips are just a few of the players that have recently made their international debuts.
Except for Jordan Henderson, none of the England midfielders has played more than 20 times for the Three Lions. For all of the young people engaged, it will be a true test of character. They’ll be put in high-stakes scenarios regularly and will have to rely on one another.
Above all, this is where a player like Jesse Lingard could have made a huge difference for the team. But that is not to be, and Southgate must hope that Henderson can prove his fitness and establish himself as a regular in the team.