Southgate questioned why Harry Maguire is picked ahead of Ben White for England

So the England squad for the upcoming international break has been announced by Gareth Southgate, and the Arsenal contingent has been greatly reduced this time around.

We knew that Emile Smith-Rowe would be left out due to not playing because of his ongoing injury problems, but we now Know that Ben White, who has played every League game for Arteta this season, is also going to be left at home.

The ex-striker Darren Bent could not hide his surprise in Southgate’s choice when he has picked the out-of-favour and out-of-form Harry Maguire has been chosen in his place, despite only featuring in Man United’s opening two games this season.

“How can Maguire be in the squad and Ben White not be? I need someone to tell me a reasonable argument,” Bent said on talkSPORT. “By trade, Ben White is a centre-half. Maguire’s got no form and he’s not playing.”

I can’t say I’m upset when Arsenal players are overlooked for internationals as we have then got more chance of a rest and less chance of injuries, but I can imagine that White must be wondering how well he has to play if he is going to get a place at the World Cup Finals later this year.

I must admit I’m not happy that Bukayo Saka has been picked either, as it looks to me like he never gets a rest…

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  1. I agree with Pat absolutely – it’s good news that so many of the squad get time off, although if we get any more injuries in training we may need to start sending them out on international duty for a rest 😉

    It is strange that Maguire is still selected – he’s not up to it at the top level, but it’s a problem with many managers that they form inter-personal relationships and find it hard to drop their friends. Southgate started by clearing out the old guard but he seems to have fallen into the same trap with the new lot.

    That said, most international teams are not that great, my personal view is that international football is not the highest standard of the game, so the likes of Maguire are not overly exposed there.

    It’s also possible that Southgate wants to see how he is before deciding to leave him at home (his confidence may be shot to bits by recent events). It’s only friendlies, so coaches may leave some players out of the squad if they know they will be picking them for the WC (may also be true for Martinelli and Jesus).

  2. The fact that White has been playing RB may have influenced Southgate as this is one position where England are relatively strong.Southgate tends be loyal to players with whom he has built up a relationship over the past 2/3 years.That in itself is commendable, but in terms of footballing ability, White is way ahead of the likes of Maguire and the very average Coady who will exposed against the top international sides.

  3. Reports are that White has a slight niggle. Feels like Edi might be learning the dark arts of club vs international friendlies – White and Zinchenko with slight niggles; late night conversations with Brazil selectors…

    I’ve no problem with Maguire’s selection. Yes he has been rubbish lately but Southgaye is showing loyalty to a player who has more than proven his worth on the international stage. I expect Southgate to give him plenty of time in the friendlies to prove his worth

  4. It’s great. Leave Benny Blanco fresh for Arsenal.
    England simply can’t win this the political FA. Maguire and Shaw? The midfield has no creativity so good luck Gareth. And messing about with Ming’s at Villa and then dropping him from the squad. FA are very backward.
    and that’s why England don’t win.
    Maguire and Shaw definitely going to Qatar, excited?

  5. Maguire operates better in the No.6 role unlike the No.5 position which he operates in at United. He helped England to the Semis of the last World Cup and that’s why Southgate prefers him ahead of the less experienced Ben White. As usual he will be deployed in the No.6 position by the gaffer.

  6. I find it funny when people just pick the semi’s or final without considering the quality of opposition.
    I don’t care much about Maguire in the team, just what is Coady, John Stone and Guehi doing in the team ahead of White.

    Or what is Grealish offering the team ahead of Madison.

    This is the reason for the good performance against average team and frustration against a decent team.

    Brazil, Argentina, Spain, France, Netherlands are no teams that allow Passengers in the opposition team.

    In case you care about my option instead…
    White in Coady out
    Madison in Grealish out

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