England squad: Major Harry Maguire call as Man Utd and Man City stars learn fate from Gareth Southgate
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Gareth Southgate has opted to keep the faith in struggling Manchester United centre-back Harry Maguire as he unveils his England squad for upcoming Euro 2024 qualification fixtures.
Maguire has only started five Premier League matches for the Red Devils this season with new competition from Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez but keeps the backing of the England boss.
Other big calls in the squad include a recall for in-form Brentford man Ivan Toney despite ongoing alleged betting offences. Chelsea full-backs Reece James and Ben Chilwell are also back in the squad after missing the World Cup through injury whilst Arsenal defender Ben White misses out despite recent form on a controversial decision.
Crystal Palace star Marc Guehi comes in for Everton defender Conor Coady while Brighton’s Solly March is another unlucky not to be called up. The full list of Manchester United stars making the squad is; Harry Maguire; Luke Shaw and Marcus Rashford.
The full list of Manchester City players included is; John Stones; Kyle Walker; Kalvin Phillips; Phil Foden and Jack Grealish.
England begin their Euro 2024 qualifying campaign this month against Italy and Ukraine in what will be the first Three Lions action since bowing out of the World Cup following defeat from France.
Southgate will take the national side to Naples to face Italy before welcoming Ukraine to Wembley Stadium. The England boss said he was 'conflicted' as to whether or not he should remain in his role after World Cup disappointment but decided to remain until after the Euro 2024 competition in Germany next summer.
Next Thursday's clash with Roberto Mancini's Italy will be somewhat of a grudge match for England, who suffered defeat at the hands of the Italians in the final of Euro 2020.
Italy are the top seed in the competition and also got the better of Southgate's side in the Nations League last September. The visit of Ukraine will look an easier test on paper but the England manager will likely opt to field a strong side in both matches with June fixtures against Malta and North Macedonia perhaps more of a chance to experiment.
England 25-man squad
Goalkeepers: Jordan Pickford (Everton), Nick Pope (Newcastle United), Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal)
Defenders: Ben Chilwell (Chelsea), Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur), Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace), Reece James (Chelsea), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), John Stones (Manchester City), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle United), Kyle Walker (Manchester City)
Midfielders: Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Conor Gallagher (Chelsea), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), James Maddison (Leicester City), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Kalvin Phillips (Manchester City), Declan Rice (West Ham United)
Forwards: Phil Foden (Manchester City), Jack Grealish (Manchester City), Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Ivan Toney (Brentford)