Gareth Southgate has revealed his reasoning behind not selecting Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson in his latest England squad.
Southgate announced his latest England squad on Tuesday afternoon, and there were some surprise inclusions and omissions. James Justin and Jarrod Bowen were given their first call-ups, but Henderson, who has 69 England caps, wasn’t selected.
The England manager has given his reasoning for not selecting Henderson, as relayed by 90min.
“I was very conscious of the Champions League boys. They’ve had a remarkable season – they couldn’t have been involved in any more matches,” said Southgate.
Henderson and Trent Alexander-Arnold are key figures in a Liverpool team who have been heavily involved in four competitions this season. The Merseyside club have reached all three finals available to them, alongside competing in the Premier League.
“I spoke to the two lads about what they felt was best for them. And they’re in different positions because of Jordan’s age and the number of caps he’s got is totally different to Trent of course. We’ve got good players in all those areas of the pitch, so we’ve got cover. We felt we didn’t need to see Hendo this summer,” added Southgate.
Southgate knows what to expect from Henderson, having played for his country for many years now. The situation of Alexander-Arnold is a little different, especially as he’s competing with Reece James for a starting spot.
England have often set up in a back five, a system Alexander-Arnold isn’t used to, whereas James plays as a wing-back week in week out. The Liverpool defender will be desperate to prove to Southgate that he deserves a place in the England starting eleven.