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Most used players Gareth Southgate

Managers don’t come more honest than Gareth Southgate.

Despite picking a bold squad for Euro 2024, the England manager has tended to pick his tried and tested favorites over the years. The performance of the team did not always influence his thinking when it came time to announce his team before the international break, his faith in people not affected by a dip in form.

At times Southgate’s reluctance to abandon his most trusted team-mates has been his downfall, with good displays in an England shirt more than anything else.

Here are the ten players most used by Gareth Southgate as England manager.

Kieran Trippier, Gareth Southgate

Trippier is a flexible option / Richard Pelham/GettyImages

Kieran Trippier has been a reliable subject for Southgate, and the Newcastle United defender has given the England boss great versatility. Although traditionally a right-back, he has featured more at left-back to fill in for the injured Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell.

The 33-year-old has never been a great option compared to other England defenders, but he has always shown confidence at world level.

Declan Rice

Rice has always been in the middle of the field / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages

Having been one of England’s few defensive midfield options of late, Declan Rice has played a key role for the Three Lions. While he often operates in a box-to-box role for Arsenal, he has been employed more as a destroyer by Southgate.

It’s a role that Rice fills admirably, even if he can have a bigger impact playing alongside the holding midfielder. One of the best in the world right now, there can be no arguments about Southgate’s continued selection for the 25-year-old.

Jordan Henderson - Football Player

Henderson wasn’t always picky between fans / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Not many England players have divided opinion like Jordan Henderson. The former Liverpool captain has been out of form for a long time, yet he has appeared ahead of the in-form midfielders at Southgate’s previous teams – a decision that has often frustrated fans.

Having been withdrawn from Euro 2024, Henderson’s international days may have come to an end. At 33, the Ajax man has been a great worker for his country, but it is time to bring in a new generation.

Raheem Sterling

Sterling was absent from recent squads / Craig Mercer/MB Media/GettyImages

With his team’s form questionable in recent seasons, it’s easy to forget just how much Raheem Sterling once did for team and country. Aged just 29, the Chelsea winger has scored in every four games for the Three Lions.

Sterling’s pace made him a unique option in England during the early days of Southgate’s tenure, but the sudden influx of world-class players has seen him quickly fall down the pecking order.

Marcus Rashford

Man Utd midfielder misses Euro 2024 / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

Another unnamed star in England’s Euro 2024 squad, Marcus Rashford was as unexpected for his country as he was for Manchester United. At his best, there are few strikers of the highest quality in England, but his inconsistency has been his undoing.

Rashford still has a long international career ahead of him but his performances must improve significantly if he is to be part of England’s 2026 World Cup squad.

John Stones

Stones is England’s best defender / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

Southgate is blessed with great depth in many areas of the pitch, but centre-back has not been one of them. Fortunately, John Stones has been available for the 53-year-old, and the Manchester City defender has been cut above the rest of England.

Injuries have curtailed his international exposure, but the 30-year-old has still racked up 60 appearances under Southgate, with more to come.

Jordan Pickford

Pickford has always been Southgate’s number one / Catherine Ivill – AMA/GettyImages

Having benefited from the lack of competition for his jersey, Jordan Pickford has been England’s number one goalkeeper under Southgate. It is one position where the Three Lions boss has never wavered in his loyalty.

The Everton stopper has improved a lot in recent seasons and is now England’s first-choice stopper, with his poor club form never having an impact on the international stage.

Harry Maguire

Maguire confident despite dip in form / BSR Agency/GettyImages

Another England regular who has proved to be a divisive midfielder, Harry Maguire is usually Southgate’s centre-back. Even now out of the Man Utd squad, the centre-half often finds refuge during the international break.

Injuries have prevented him from going to Euro 2024 and the commanding defender, despite facing his share of criticism, will be missed for his leadership, physicality and goal threat.

Kyle Walker

Walker battled the competition at right back / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

In a situation where England have had a ridiculous number of elite options, Kyle Walker has fought off competition from Reece James and Trent Alexander-Arnold to make a full-back spot his own. Although he is not a perfect musician, his qualities make him very important in England.

The Man City defender is now 34 but shows no signs of slowing down – literally or figuratively – with no rival to usurp him on the right side of defence.

Harry Kane

Kane is England’s leading goalscorer / Richard Sellers/Allstar/GettyImages

It is no surprise to see England captain, Harry Kane, on this list. The country’s leading goalscorer at international level, Southgate would be crazy to consider a forward line without Bayern Munich’s sharpshooter.

The high expectations of England fans meant that even Kane was not immune to criticism, but the Three Lions would not have reached the level they have in recent competitions without the ferocity of their number nine.


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