Why would the FA hide the fact that Ben White left the England camp under a cloud?

The Arsenal right back Ben White was left out of Gareth Southgate’s squad to face Wales in the last World Cup Group game, and then left the England camp in Qatar to return home, with the FA citing ‘personal reasons’.

“Ben White has left England’s training base in Al Wakrah and returned home for personal reasons,” read an FA statement.

“The Arsenal defender is not expected to return to the squad for the remainder of the tournament. We ask that the player’s privacy is respected at this moment in time.”

Well, we at JustArsenal agreed not to join in with any rumours or conspiracy theories because we agreed his “privacy should be respected” as we had no idea of the causes.

Now it seems that the Daily Star has revealed that White had simply had an argument with his coach Steve Holland.

They reported in an Exclusive article: It’s understood the Arsenal defender became unhappy in the England camp and struggled to mix with his fellow team-mates.

And the final straw came when he had a fall out with Gareth Southgate’s No2 Holland in front of the rest of the squad.

The pair are understood to have exchanged words when White turned up for a team meeting ahead of the Group B clash with the USA not knowing some vital information relating to his personal stats.

To me that all sounds a bit vague, although a public argument with a coach over not doing his homework could be expected to have repurcussions, like a detention or even expulsion, but it could hardly be called “personal reasons”, like having a house invasion, or a death in the family.

If this is true (and surely the Star wouldn’t have published it if it wasn’t) then I cannot understand why it had to be so cloaked in secrecy.

Why did they have to try and pull the wool over our eyes?

Darren N


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  1. ‘Journalistic integrity’ and ‘Daily Star’ do not belong in the same sentence.
    More likely Holland was the bearer of bad news, and the incident has been twisted to create a (non-)’story’.
    Take it with a pinch of salt.

  2. May be England didn’t want the issue to make news headlines and then in turn affect the teams performance

  3. This is swimming in murky waters. My interests in the Club and sports will be better served by letting sleeping dogs lie. Not sure what benefits will accrue to the BW and it’s better to help shield him from any speculations or damage to his personality. Better still we need to morally support him to restore his confidence and focus while playing for the team.

  4. The way it was originally worded by fa sounded like he had a family bereavement if the incident is true then its very poor did they really think it would be kept under wraps in todays society!

  5. If he came home for non personal reasons then surely he would have gone with the Arsenal squad to Dubai ?

    1. I’m not convinced that he’s been through anything yet. If it’s true that he had a falling out with the coach and didn’t get on with some of the squad members, then TBH that’s no reason to trounce off home.
      We’ll find out eventually, truth usually come out.

      1. You’re not convinced he’s been through anything yet? Even though the FA, and Arsenal made it clear it was personal reasons and his privacy should be respected? Even after his teammate Bukayo Saka mentioned he needed to go be with his family like Sterling needed to?
        What professional footballer do you know gives up the chance of performing at the world cup for silly reasons such as misunderstanding with a coach.
        What is it you want to hear or read about him before you believe he’s gone or going through stuff?
        You’d rather prefer to read terrible stuff happens to him? SMH. Some fan

          1. It’s so easy to forget the human element in football, I said it on another thread, i find it normal in for football fans to be selfish.

        1. The keyword in my comment was IF (and I don’t have any preferences as to what I read about him, it means nothing to me), but IF I’m going to read something then I’d rather read the truth, which doesn’t yet seem to be forthcoming.
          IF he has family issues (as you say Saka mentioned) then I can understand his leaving the squad. IF he has had a fallout with the coaches then it’s petulance.
          This article didn’t need to be written, but since it was then right or wrong I’ll give an opinion, it’s what we do on Just Arsenal, and whether or not I’m a fan all I can say is that I’m a watcher and supporter.😏

  6. While this is bullshít cus his best friend Kalvin Phillips and club mates were there so I don’t get the struggling to mix crap talk.
    In all honesty, I swear I would prefer for this to be true. I would be prefer to see this to end up being the reason that the reason being something sad, tragic or terrible about him and his family.
    He left because he couldn’t mix with the national team squad, yet he’s not with his football club and his teammates at Dubai.
    People can be so stupid

  7. why does it matter?

    do we have to know the ins and outs of everyones personal life?

    get a grip people, leave the boy alone to get on with whatever is up with him and/or family.

    show some respect, we do not need to know why

  8. Didn’t arsenal release a statement ‘ we are with you Ben ‘
    Would seem odd if they were saying that regarding him falling out with a coach

    1. Daniel Smith
      I have the same take as you regarding the statement by the club. A personal matter, maybe extending to his family, but clearly private and not for public consumption.

      Would be very odd indeed if the “we support you Ben” was in reference to a spat with a coach and not mixing with the teammates.

      Daily Star won’t grab attention with a “we still don’t know” headline, so they lowered themselves to the gutter to draw attention.

  9. Neymar is dropping too deep to receive the ball, Croatia is playing compact and organized.

    The land of Samba and football has to score in the first 20 minutes of the second half, Croatia traditionally always come alive nearing the end.

  10. We inspite that his secrecy was respected definitely there must be something behind but we have to wait to hear from him or from the coach first. From NIGERIA WEST AFRICA

  11. Ever since White revealed he isn’t obsessed with football the english media has attacked his character over and over. These are lies.

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