Gareth Southgate reveals Luke Shaw problem for Euro 2024 campaign | Football


Gareth Southgate reveals Luke Shaw problem for Euro 2024 campaign | Football

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The left-back’s fitness issues will need managing in Germany (Picture: Getty)

England boss Gareth Southgate has suggested Luke Shaw will not be available throughout the entirety of this summer’s Euros, while his midfield plans have also taken a knock.

The Manchester United left-back has endured an injury-plagued campaign, with a string of muscle injuries – including a serious hamstring issue – limiting him to just 12 Premier League appearances.

He is once again sidelined now, causing him to miss the latest international break, while he is facing a race against time to return to action for United before the end of the season.

Even if he does get back before the tournament in Germany, Southgate fears Shaw’s fitness issues will limit his involvement – though he is in no doubt that the United star is England’s best left-back.

‘He’s going to be right on the edge of the season,’ explained the England boss following his side’s 1-0 defeat to Brazil on Saturday.

‘We know now to play seven matches in a Euros is highly unlikely.’

Backup left-back Ben Chilwell faced some criticism for his display against Brazil, with Southgate continuing: ‘I thought Ben defended really well and it was an important game for him.

‘I don’t want to kill Ben. But Luke’s one of the best left-backs in world football, frankly.’

Shaw has had three separate, lengthy spells on the sidelines (Picture: Getty)

Another issue for Southgate is the makeup of his midfield, with the England boss having been keen to use Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold alongside Declan Rice.

With previous regulars Jordan Henderson and Kalvin Phillips drifting out of contention, the spot is up for grabs but Alexander-Arnold was unavailable for the latest round of friendlies and Southgate is apprehensive about using the full-back in midfield without tested it out rigorously before the Euros.

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‘The midfield thing we’ve seen, but we’ve missed two opportunities with September and now this one that is really frustrating because there’s so much that’s unknown about it at the minute,’ Southgate continued.

‘As you know, I’ve liked the idea for a long time but we’re going to be trialling it when we haven’t seen it in a really high level game. So we’ll just have to see where we can go with it.

‘It’s such a specialist position. There’s a huge difference between playing at full-back and popping into midfield and playing in there, starting in there, in and out of position in the game.

‘Receiving with your back to goal, so there’s a lot to that. We’re just going to have to see.’

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