Gareth Southgate shakes up England squad, leaving Raheem Sterling out and future in doubt
Raheem Sterling’s place as a key member of England’s international football squad is in jeopardy. The Three Lions’ manager, Gareth Southgate, has given Sterling a severe blow by stating that he is no longer guaranteed a place in the team due to increased competition for positions.
Sterling was recently left out of England’s squad for coming matches against Australia and Italy, marking the winger’s second consecutive omission. Despite Sterling’s excellent track record of 82 caps and 20 goals for England, Southgate reiterated that past successes are no longer enough, given the increasing talent pool at his disposal.
England Manager stated: “The wide players we picked, we’re really happy with. Rashford, Foden, Saka and Jack Grealish have all been consistently good for us. In the end, we’ve got tough competition for places in several areas of the pitch. So there is a battle now, without a doubt.
“For a long period of time Raheem was the one that was scoring goals for us and his club. We now have goals from Saka, Foden, Rashford. Rashford’s always been a scorer with us. Grealish is a different type of wide player, so now we’re getting goals from Bellingham.
“We’re not just reliant on Harry Kane. For a long time it was Harry and Raheem that were knocking up the goals. But there’s a different competition in place.”
The manager’s preference for other forwards, including Jarrod Bowen over Sterling, has stirred up debate among England fans. In addition, the return of Ollie Watkins, as well as the addition of players such as John Stones, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and Bukayo Saka, indicate the increased competition and scrutiny for places on the national squad.
Many fans and pundits have questioned Sterling’s position and future with the Three Lions, as he faces a difficult task of recovering his position among a surge of young talent. With Manchester United’s Harry Maguire making a recovery and potential players like Saka attracting notice, Chelsea winger path to a place in England’s squad appears to be more precarious than ever.
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