Who may be in the frame for England selection against Spain and Switzerland?
The World Cup may only feel like five minutes ago, but Gareth Southgate will next week name the England squad for next month’s double-header.
The Three Lions kick-off the inaugural UEFA Nations League campaign against Spain at Wembley on September 8, before taking on Switzerland in a friendly at the King Power Stadium on September 11.
Here, Press Association Sport looks at some of the players that may have caught Southgate’s eye in the first two Premier League matches.
James Maddison has started life at Leicester impressively (Mike Egerton/PA)
Injury prevented the 21-year-old from spending some time with England’s squad during their World Cup preparations and a fine start to life in the Premier League will have given Southgate further food for thought. Having seamlessly made the big-money switch from Norwich to Leicester, Maddison impressed at Manchester United and kicked on with a goal in Saturday’s 2-0 defeat of Wolves.
Luke Shaw scored his first senior goal against Leicester (Nick Potts/PA)
Four years ago he was the youngest player of any nation to get minutes at the World Cup. This time around, a lack of form, fitness and game-time meant the Manchester United left-back watched from afar. But Shaw’s summer fitness regime – and seemingly improved relationship with Jose Mourinho – is paying dividends. The 23-year-old capped a man-of-the-match display in the season-opening win against Leicester with his first ever goal and was one of few respectful performers in the loss at Brighton. Shaw worked with Southgate at Under-21s level and has won one senior cap under him.
Theo Walcott impressed against former club Southampton on Saturday (Peter Byrne/PA)
After working hard to help 10-man Everton secure a draw at Wolves, the 29-year-old wound back the years with a fine display against former club Southampton. Walcott opened the scoring at the end of a fine free-kick routine before sending in an exceptional cross directed home by Richarlison in a 2-1 win at Goodison Park. Southgate was in the stands as Walcott scored and assisted in a Premier League match for the first time since January 2013. Three of his 47 international caps came under the current England boss, but the former Arsenal forward’s last came in November 2016.
Bournemouth´s Callum Wilson netted superbly at West Ham (Nigel French/PA)
Long linked with an international call-up, the Bournemouth striker pressed his case with an impressive start to the 2018-19 season. Wilson scored in the 2-0 opening-day victory against Cardiff and inspired a comeback win at West Ham in style, slaloming through to slot home and secure a 2-1 win. The 26-year-old looks superb for a player that has had to deal with anterior cruciate ligament injuries in both knees in recent years, displaying an attitude as impressive as his aptitude.
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