Jesse Lingard has the chance to “show me I’m wrong” after being left out of the England squad for Euro 2020 says Gareth Southgate.
Lingard was one of seven players cut from the provisional squad, but the on-loan West Ham forward will start Wednesday’s friendly against Austria.
It is one of two warm-up games for the Three Lions before the tournament, with the other against Romania on Sunday.
Boss Southgate added Lingard, 28, was a “reliable” member of the group.
Lingard endured a difficult time at Manchester United over the past couple of years and barely featured for the side this term, playing in two Carabao Cup games and the FA Cup third round.
He joined West Ham on loan for the rest of the season in January where he showcased his abilities, scoring nine goals in 18 games to help the Hammers qualify for the Europa League next season.
But his form in the second half of the season was not enough to convince Southgate of a place in the 26-man squad for the Euros, instead being named on the standby list.
Aaron Ramsdale, Ben White, Ben Godfrey, James Ward-Prowse and Ollie Watkins also failed to make the cut but may be called up if a player pulls out through injury.
Southgate said: “Jesse has had a good spell with West Ham and is someone who has played so well with England. We have total trust in the way he plays, he is reliable, a great member of the group.
“He will start tomorrow [Wednesday] because Sancho is ill and a lot of players are not available. He deserves that opportunity to show me I am wrong straight away.
“We have to keep the standby players match ready in case they come back into that squad.
“They deserve it, their commitment to stay with the group, the respect for their team-mates to be here, shows what playing for England means to this group of players.
“It is important the public know that because sometimes people dismiss the importance of England caps and what it means to players.”
Chelsea and Manchester City players who were involved in the Champions League final will not feature and those who played in the Europa League final for Manchester United are unlikely to play either.
- England will face Austria for the first time since November 2007, a 1-0 friendly win courtesy of Peter Crouch’s goal in Vienna.
- Austria last visited England for an away match in October 2005 in a World Cup qualifier, losing 1-0 at Old Trafford thanks to a Frank Lampard penalty.
- England’s last defeat by Austria came in June 1979, losing 4-3 in Vienna in a friendly under Ron Greenwood. On home soil, England’s only defeat in six previous meetings came in October 1965 at Wembley, losing 3-2.
- England have won their last six friendly matches, scoring 14 goals and conceding just one. They last won seven friendlies in a row between June 1985 and May 1986 under Sir Bobby Robson.
- Austria have won eight of their last 10 friendly matches (L2), scoring at least twice in seven of those eight wins.
- This is only England’s second ever match at the Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough, after their 2-1 win over Slovakia in June 2003. Manager Gareth Southgate – then of Middlesbrough – played the full 90 minutes for the Three Lions that day.
- England striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin has scored four goals in seven appearances so far, including in friendly games against Wales and Republic of Ireland. Calvert-Lewin is averaging a goal every 73 minutes in his England career, the best ratio of any player to play at least five games for the Three Lions since the Second World War.
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