Gareth Southgate has explained why he has chosen to leave Southampton striker Danny Ings out of his England squad for Euro 2020.
Although the Saints hotshot was seen as an outside bet for a place in the Three Lions’ plans, it was still a surprise to not see him included in a provisional 33-man group – especially when he has a favourable record in comparison to others.
Speaking in his press conference on Tuesday, Gareth Southgate said (via the Athletic’s Dan Sheldon):
"“I think we probably have looked at the squad in March & that’s the basis of this squad. We were very pleased with the forward players selected in March. It’s unfortunate Danny has missed out.”"
Ings unfortunate not to join Southampton teammate Ward-Prowse in squad
Danny Ings has not managed to score as frequently this season as he did in 2019/20, but there are a number of reasons for this.
More from Saints Marching
- Grading the Southampton Transfer Window Part 2: Arrivals
- Grading the Southampton Transfer Window Part 1: Departures
- It’s time to talk about Gavin Bazunu
- Rain clouds on the horizon? Southampton beat Plymouth Argyle
- A lament for Southampton legend James Ward-Prowse
Last season he played a part in every Saints game in the Premier League. 38 games and no injuries saw him hit a superb run of form and end the campaign with 22 league goals, meaning he was well in the race for the golden boot up until the final day.
This time around he was only able to play a part in 29 and had 631 less minutes on the pitch. He ended the season with a more than respectable 13 goals in all competitions whilst also laying on four assists, so it is not a coincidence that Saints struggled at points and won just one of the nine top-flight games their striker missed.
He is still one of the best goalscorers in the Premier League currently but seems to have been pushed aside in favour of youth as England look towards the future.
This will be understandably frustrating for the 28-year-old. He has had to work his way up through the leagues and develop his game to prove himself at the top level, but now he is there and playing on a weekly basis he has been considered too old.
Saints do have one player in England’s squad with James Ward-Prowse but his place may be in the balance too when Southgate has to cut seven names off his list.