MX23RW : Sunday, June 16 14:50:57| >> :120:16356:16356:
[monks data]
Serbia national football team
European Championship | Group Stage
Jun 16, 2024 at 8pm UK
VELTINS-Arena
England national football team

Serbia
vs.
England

Gareth Southgate 'makes major Alexander-Arnold decision' for Euro 2024 opener

Southgate 'makes major Alexander-Arnold decision' for Euro 2024 opener
© Reuters
England manager Gareth Southgate reportedly plans to start Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold in midfield for the Three Lions' Euro 2024 opener with Serbia this weekend.

England manager Gareth Southgate reportedly plans to start Trent Alexander-Arnold in midfield for the Three Lions' Euro 2024 opener against Serbia on Sunday.

The Liverpool right-back has often operated as a midfielder for his nation over the past 12 months thanks to his exceptional passing range, and he was listed among England's engine room selections in their preliminary squad.

Alexander-Arnold was given the nod in a central role for England's first friendly of the month against Bosnia-Herzegovina, where he smashed home a terrific volley for his nation's second in their three-goal success.

A sensational Alexander-Arnold cross-field pass out to Jack Grealish also did the rounds on social media, although the 25-year-old was dropped to the bench for last Friday's contest with Iceland, which England lost 1-0.

Alexander-Arnold did manage to create three chances as a second-half substitute from a right-back position, though, strengthening his claim for a starting spot in England's Group C opener this weekend.

Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold pictured on January 28, 2024© Reuters

Alexander-Arnold 'to partner Declan Rice against Serbia'

Tongues were further sent wagging when Alexander-Arnold was given the eight shirt - the traditional jersey for central midfielders - for the Euros, a number previously sported by the likes of Jude Bellingham and Jordan Henderson.

Now, The Telegraph claims that the Liverpool academy product is set to be given the nod in midfield for Sunday's fixture at the Veltins-Arena, joining Arsenal's Declan Rice in a two-man engine room.

Alexander-Arnold is expected to hold off the threat of Adam Wharton, Kobbie Mainoo and Conor Gallagher to feature alongside Rice, and the pair will operate behind Bellingham - assuming the Real Madrid man is fit - in the number 10 role.

With Alexander-Arnold strutting his stuff in midfield, Manchester City's Kyle Walker is nailed-on to start on the right-hand side of defence, while Kieran Trippier should fill in on the left flank for the time being.

Alexander-Arnold's vicious volley against Bosnia was his third senior goal for the Three Lions, and he has also produced five assists in 25 matches for his country since making his debut in June 2018.

What other selection dilemmas is Southgate facing before Euro 2024?

England manager Gareth Southgate pictured on June 7, 2024© Reuters

In spite of Wharton's seamless adaptation to Premier League football, Mainoo's meteoric rise to stardom and Gallagher's relentless pressing, England's abysmal attacking display versus Iceland meant that Alexander-Arnold simply had to be selected for Serbia.

While Southgate therefore has his two-man midfield sorted, the England boss is still facing a handful of quandaries in the defensive and attacking thirds, especially as John Stones and Marc Guehi both suffered injury blows in Friday's defeat.

However, both men escaped serious concerns and are expected to partner up in front of Jordan Pickford amid Harry Maguire's absence, but Bellingham did not play in either friendly, while Bukayo Saka only came off the bench in the second half against Iceland.

Neither man has been ruled out just yet - the same goes for Phil Foden - but the likes of Cole Palmer and Eberechi Eze, both of whom successfully auditioned for the final squad against Bosnia, could take advantage of the situation.

Sunday's match is also expected to come too soon for long-term absentee Luke Shaw, although the Manchester United man - who has not played for his country in 12 months - is apparently optimistic of being back in full training at some point this week.

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Who will win Sunday's European Championship clash between Serbia and England?

Serbia
Draw
England
Serbia
14.4%
Draw
9.2%
England
76.4%
563
Collect / Create New Data
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England manager Gareth Southgate before the match on November 17, 2023
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Euro 2024 fixtures header
Sunday, June 16
 
5pm
Monday, June 17
 
2pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
Tuesday, June 18
 
5pm
Wednesday, June 19
 
2pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
Thursday, June 20
 
2pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
Group Stage
Spain
vs.
Italy
Friday, June 21
 
2pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
Saturday, June 22
 
5pm
 
8pm
Sunday, June 23
 
8pm
 
8pm
Monday, June 24
 
8pm
 
8pm
Tuesday, June 25
 
5pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
 
8pm
Wednesday, June 26
 
5pm
 
5pm
 
8pm
 
8pm
Saturday, June 29
Sunday, June 30
Monday, July 1
Tuesday, July 2
Friday, July 5
Saturday, July 6
Tuesday, July 9
Wednesday, July 10
Sunday, July 14
Tables header RHS

Group A

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Germany Germany11003
2 Switzerland Switzerland11003
3 Hungary Hungary10010
4 Scotland flag Scotland10010

Group B

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Spain Spain11003
2 Italy Italy11003
3 Albania national flag Albania10010
4 Croatia Croatia10010

Group C

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Denmark Denmark00000
2 England flag England00000
3 Serbia Serbia00000
4 Slovenia Slovenia00000

Group D

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Austria Austria00000
2 France France00000
3 Netherlands Netherlands00000
4 Poland Poland00000

Group E

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Belgium Belgium00000
2 Romania Romania00000
3 Slovakia Slovakia00000
4 Ukraine Ukraine00000

Group F

TeamPWDLPTS
1 Czech Republic Czech Republic00000
2 Georgia Georgia00000
3 Portugal Portugal00000
4 Turkey Turkey00000


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