Roy Hodgson has a decision to make later today when he picks his final 23-man squad for Euro 2016. Initially Hodgson named a 26-man provisional squad but with Fabian Delph’s injury (again) made the manager’s job even easier.
At this moment, the axe is hovering over Daniel Sturridge, Andres Townsend and Danny Drinkwater to be amongst the two players to be left behind as England fly out to France next Monday.
Marcus Rashford was on the list as well until his stunning debut against Australia where the Manchester United striker scored after 135 seconds in to his debut. His goal-scoring abilities and the option of using him out on the wings would prompt Hodgson to stick with the 18-year old attacker.
From where I see it, Drinkwater will be the unfortunate one to get the axe as Hodgson will not go against Jack Wilshere, and Eric Dier is indispensable for the Three Lions right now. Dier’s inclusion will be vital as England are going in with only 7 defenders which would see Dier fill-in at the central defense, if need be.
As for Drinkwater, he lacks there and it will be the deciding ground for his exclusion from England’s final 23-man Euro 2016 squad. With Drinkwater aside, choice will be between Sturridge and Townsend, where one is a lethal striker but struggles with injuries while the other is a potential but still untested at International level.
From where I see this, Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy will be ahead of Sturridge at the Euros, and with Rashford’s emergence, England will have a lot of options to chose from in term of strikers. However with Townsend, England would get the natural wide threat which they have been after for some time now.
Despite the initial reports of Wayne Rooney playing there, Raheem Sterling is the only option to play from the left wing. Its clear that Hodgson is making contingency plans for his defenders and strikers but what about the wing play?
Had I been given the chance to make this decision on behalf of Hodgson, I would take Andres Townsend to the Euros and ask Sturridge to work on the fitness. The Liverpool striker may be an enigma but has only played 58 minutes for his country since September 2014.
He is currently nursing a calf injury and is not even certain to play a part in England’s last friendly against Portugal this Thursday. A manager should not rely on an injury prone striker ahead of such a big tournament, however, the decision could entirely be different when Hodgson names his 23-man Euro 2016 squad later today.
Before that, we present faceoffootball’s preferred England squad for the Euro 2016. Three Lions kick-off their campaign on June 11 against Russia.