Southgate Explains Why He Omitted Bukayo Saka From England Called Up
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Eligible Nigerian player, Bukayo Saka’s omission from the latest England squad list announced on Tuesday by the Three Lions’ manager, Gareth Southgate has generated a lot of debate, with non-Nigerian fans and pundits alike questioning the decision of Gareth Southgate to snub the versatile left-sided player.
There is no recognized left-back in the Three Lions squad, with Ben Chilwell and Luke Shaw not available for selection due to injury while Danny Rose has been snubbed as a result of a loss of form.
Southgate explained that Saka was not called up because he is more of an attack-minded player than a defender, adding that the Hale End Academy product is in line to be named to the England U21 team for the Euro qualifiers next month.
“He’s obviously with the Under-21s this time and I feel he’s more of an attacking player. I know he’s played at left-back and he’s given good contributions there in an attacking sense certainly,” Southgate was quoted as saying by Goal.com.
“At the moment left wing-back, left side higher up the pitch, I know he’s played in midfield and on the right as well but that they would be his better positions. He’s a very exciting player.
“It is still early for him but he’s a player we like and we’re monitoring very closely. I think Phil, in particular, has been patient for his opportunity.
“We’ve taken our time with that but yeah Saka had a very good season with Arsenal, not in the team at the very end but really good season of progress and he’s a player (we’re) watching very closely.”
The 18-year-old Saka had a great season for Arsenal and his four goals and twelve assists in 38 appearances back this up.