Football News: Southgate’s Midfield Dilemma for Euro 2024

As the UEFA Euro 2024 tournament approaches, England manager Gareth Southgate faces a series of challenging decisions, particularly when it comes to selecting his starting midfield. With a wealth of talent at his disposal, the England boss must carefully evaluate his options to field the best possible lineup for the team’s opening match against Serbia on June 16th.

Bellingham and Rice: The Guaranteed Starters

According to talkSPORT’s Jim White, two names appear to be guaranteed starters in central midfield: Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice. The dynamic duo have established themselves as integral parts of the England setup, with Bellingham, just 20 years old, already earning 29 caps and Rice reaching the milestone of 50 appearances for the national team.

The Debate Surrounding the Third Midfield Spot

However, the debate surrounding the third midfield spot has sparked intense discussions among pundits and fans alike. Former England striker Peter Crouch believes that Manchester City’s Phil Foden could be the best fit, despite the player’s higher goal-scoring rate for his club compared to the national team. Crouch argues that Foden’s intelligence and work ethic make him a valuable asset in the center of the pitch.

On the other hand, talkSPORT’s Darren Bent is not as convinced by Foden’s indispensability, pointing out the player’s relatively modest goal tally of four in 34 games for England. Bent suggests that the team’s chances of success at Euro 2024 are not solely dependent on Foden’s inclusion in the starting XI.

Alternative Midfield Options

The versatility of Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold has also been highlighted as a potential midfield option by pundits like Ray Parlour and Stuart Pearce. Alexander-Arnold’s range of passing could be a crucial asset in unlocking deep-lying defenses, making him an attractive choice for Southgate.

Furthermore, the recent emergence of 19-year-old Kobbie Mainoo of Manchester United has caught the attention of talkSPORT’s pundits, who believe the youngster could earn a starting spot alongside Bellingham and Rice. Mainoo’s impressive performances this season have earned him a spot in the England squad, and he may well force his way into the starting lineup.

With the likes of Conor Gallagher, Eberechi Eze, and Adam Wharton also providing midfield depth, Southgate has a wealth of options to choose from. As the countdown to the tournament continues, the England manager’s decisions in the middle of the park will be closely scrutinized, as he aims to assemble the perfect midfield formula to lead the team to success at Euro 2024.

๐Ÿ”— Source