Nathaniel Clyne has been called into the England squad for the forthcoming Euro 2016 qualifying matches against San Marino and Estonia.
The 23-year-old defender has been one of the stars of the show as Southampton surge up the Premier League table, with four wins from their opening six fixtures placing Ronald Koeman’s side in second position. Clyne has started every match for the Saints, and Roy Hodgson admits the former Crystal Palace youngster was even in contention for the World Cup last summer.
“He’s impressed us for a while. Even before the World Cup he was a name we were constantly considering,” Hodgson said after revealing the 21 players tasked with securing six qualifying points this month. “Now of course we have lost Glen Johnson and Kyle Walker and we were looking for another candidate for the right back post and Nathaniel has been asked to come.”
The other main talking points in the squad are the inclusion of midfielder Jonjo Shelvey, who has been in fine form for Swansea City this term, whilst Arsenal fullback Kieran Gibbs has been given the nod for the first time in almost 12 months. His Gunners team-mate, Calum Chambers, has dropped down to the Undre-21 squad, as has Manchester United’s left-back Luke Shaw. And although Daniel Sturridge could play for Liverpool against West Bromwich Albion at the weekend, Hodgson has agreed to Brendan Rodgers’ request to leave the striker behind due to his recent fitness problems.
England began their qualifying campaign with an impressive 2-0 win in Switzerland, which was considered their most difficult fixture of Group E. They now take on San Marino at Wembley on October 9, before travelling to Tallinn to take on Estonia three days later.
Goalkeepers: Fraser Forster (Southampton), Ben Foster (West Bromwich Albion), Joe Hart (Manchester City)
Defenders: Leighton Baines (Everton), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Nathaniel Clyne (Southampton), Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), Phil Jagielka (Everton), John Stones (Everton)
Midfielders: Fabian Delph (Aston Villa), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Adam Lallana (Liverpool), James Milner (Manchester City), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal), Jonjo Shelvey (Swansea City), Raheem Sterling (Liverpool), Andros Townsend (Tottenham Hotspur), Jack Wilshere (Arsenal)
Forwards: Rickie Lambert (Liverpool), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Daniel Welbeck (Arsenal)