Trent Alexander-Arnold has been ruled out of this summer’s European Championships, opening the door for Jesse Lingard to make the squad.
The 28-year-old scored nine goals and added a further five assists in just 16 appearances for the Hammers, guiding them to Europa League qualification and earning himself a spot in Southgate’s 33-man provisional squad ahead of Euro 2020.
However, Lingard was one of seven players omitted from the final squad when it was cut down to 26 on Tuesday alongside United teammate Mason Greenwood – who pulled out due to injury – as well as James Ward-Prowse, Ben Godfrey, Ben White, Ollie Watkins and Aaron Ramsdale.
Despite being offered the chance to leave the England camp when informed they wouldn’t be in the final squad, those who were fit remained with the team for the friendly matches ahead of the tournament and now have a chance to be involved after all.
England won the first of their two friendlies on Wednesday, with Bukayo Saka’s strike enough to sink Austria, but lost Alexander-Arnold to injury in the closing stages.
It’s since been announced that the Liverpool right-back faces up to six weeks on the sidelines with a thigh injury and will be unable to take part in the Euros.
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England said in a statement: “Trent Alexander-Arnold has been ruled out of UEFA EURO 2020.
“The Liverpool player sustained a thigh injury in the closing stages of Wednesday’s 1-0 win against Austria in Middlesbrough.
“A scan on Thursday confirmed the 22-year-old will be unable to play in the forthcoming tournament so he’s withdrawn from the England squad to return to his club for rehabilitation.”
Teams are allowed to change members of their squads up until the date of their first game – with England getting their group stage campaign underway against Croatia on Sunday, June 13 – so Southgate will be able to replace Alexander-Arnold with one of the six players off his stand-by list.
Lingard started the match against Austria and is reportedly the favourite to take the final spot in the squad.
However, Southgate will not announce his decision until after England’s final warm-up fixture against Romania on Sunday.