Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse could be welcomed back into the England Euro 2020 fold after fitness issues for Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson.
According to a report from the Telegraph, Ward-Prowse and Jesse Lingard are the leading candidates to step in to the 26-man group of players.
Alexander-Arnold’s withdrawal from Gareth Southgate’s squad was confirmed on Thursday and now a replacement will need to be chosen ahead of England’s opening group game on 13th June. Henderson is struggling to recover from his own problem and this has limited the part he has played in England’s preparations.
Ward-Prowse was included in a provisional 33-man squad named by Southgate but was one of seven players who did not make the final cut.
Set-pieces and midfield energy provided by Southampton’s main man
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There are some defenders that could replace Alexander-Arnold. Ben Godfrey and Ben White were two of the seven cut from the provisional group and would bring their own personal form to things.
However, with less midfield options anyway if may make sense to bring another player in there.
When we look at what Ward-Prowse has done for Saints in the past two seasons, consistency is the word that comes straight to mind. Even if the team displays have not been as expected, Ralph Hasenhuttl’s captain steps up to try and change the outcome.
He may not get into Gareth Southgate’s first-choice 11 but he could certainly provide superb running and energy in the latter stages of games if the England boss notices a tiring from his players.
Jesse Lingard may well be preferred after his brilliant burst of form for West Ham in the second half of 2020/21 and because he can play a bigger variety of roles. Southgate has praised Ward-Prowse’s professionalism recently though and his character will play a part in the final decision.
The player who will be called up to replace Alexander-Arnold is set to be revealed on Sunday (via the Telegraph’s report), whilst further fitness issues over Henderson could also force a second change.