England have lost full-backs Kieran Trippier and Ben Chilwell ahead of Wednesday’s Nations League clash with Denmark, the FA has announced.
Chilwell has now returned to Chelsea for assessment on a pre-existing injury. Atletico Madrid defender Trippier departed due to a personal matter.
Trippier captained England in their 3-0 friendly win over Wales last week. He also started the 2-1 victory against Belgium.
Chilwell did not feature in either match having breached Covid-19 guidelines. That’s after he reportedly attended a surprise birthday party for club-mate Tammy Abraham last weekend.
Gareth Southgate still has a 28-man squad to select from for the game against Denmark. However, his options on the left-side of the pitch are now drastically reduced.
Chilwell would have been seen as the obvious player to slot in at either left-back or left wing-back. That was the position Trippier occupied in the Belgium win on Sunday.
With both missing, it is likely Southgate will turn to one of two Arsenal players at his disposal. As such, Bukayo Saka and Ainsley Maitland-Niles will vie for the role with both adept down the left.
Captain Harry Kane is expected to be fit to start. That’s despite some concerns over his fitness.
Kane came on as a second-half substitute at the weekend. Were England to win, it will leave qualification to the Nations League finals in their own hands.
Cole critical of Alexander-Arnold role
Former England left-back Ashley Cole does not believe the wing-back role suits Trent Alexander-Arnold.
The 22-year-old played as a wing-back for England in their 2-1 win over Belgium on Sunday night at Wembley.
Gareth Southgate opted for a back three of Harry Maguire, Kyle Walker and Eric Dier with Alexander-Arnold and Kieran Trippier as the two wing-backs.
After a difficult first half, England collectively managed to get higher up the field in the second period against the No.1 ranked side in the world. And a Marcus Rashford penalty and a strike from Mason Mount won them the game.
Alexander-Arnold did get the license to drift in field as Southgate opted to match up Belgium’s formation in an experimental XI.
However, Cole, who was capped 107 times believes the Liverpool player is better coming from deeper positions.