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"He's a long shot" - Manchester United defender a major doubt for Euro 2024

© Reuters
England manager Gareth Southgate admits that Manchester United defender Luke Shaw is a "long shot" for Euro 2024, despite including him in his training squad.

England manager Gareth Southgate has admitted that one of the 33 players included in his Euro 2024 training squad is a "long shot" for this summer's continental championships in Germany.

An extended troupe have been called up by the Three Lions boss, who can only take at least 23 and up to 26 for the final tournament and must therefore leave at least seven players behind.

Several big names have already been omitted, including Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Marcus Rashford and Jordan Henderson, but Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw is part of his selection.

The 28-year-old - who scored the opener for England in their Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy - has endured an injury-plagued 2023-24 season with Man United, playing just 15 times across all competitions.

Shaw's most recent appearance for Erik ten Hag's side came against Luton Town on February 18, where he picked up the muscular injury that ruled him out for the remainder of the campaign.

Manchester United's Luke Shaw walks off the pitch to be substituted due to injury on February 18, 2024© Reuters

Southgate admits Shaw is "up against it"

The ex-Southampton man has been unavailable for the last four England squads through injury, last appearing for the Three Lions in June 2023, but he is still in with a chance of playing at the Euros.

However, asked about Shaw's condition in his post-announcement press conference, Southgate admitted that the defender is a major doubt for Euro 2024, which could leave him in a troublesome predicament at left-back.

"[Luke Shaw's] up against it. He's missed a lot of football. The fact that he has been our first choice in that position, we've probably given him a lot longer than we would have done," Southgate said.

"I've talked with him and the medical team, we've been liaising with Manchester United, I'm not sure what's realistic at this time. I have to say, he's a long shot."

Shaw is the only recognised left-back in the England ranks, although Kieran Trippier and Joe Gomez can also fill in on that side of the backline, while Everton's Jarrad Branthwaite is another left-footed option.

Arsenal man still "unavailable" for selection

Ben White pictured during England training on November 18, 2022© Reuters

Among the non-injured absentees is Arsenal defender Ben White, who has still not returned to the Three Lions camp since leaving the 2022 World Cup camp for personal reasons, later alleged to be a bust-up with assistant coach Steve Holland.

After saying in late 2023 that White was behind a few defenders, Southgate revealed in March that the versatile 26-year-old did not want to be considered for selection but denied that a disagreement with the coaching staff was the reason.

Asked whether he had a conversation with White, Southgate kept his reply curt, saying: "No. As far as I am aware he is unavailable."

The 53-year-old also explained his rationale behind leaving Henderson and Rashford at home, as England gear up for a pair of pre-Euro 2024 friendlies with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iceland on June 3 and 7 respectively.

The Three Lions will then meet Serbia in their Group C opener on June 16, before clashing with Denmark on June 20 and rounding off the group phase against Slovenia five days later.

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England manager Gareth Southgate before the match on October 13, 2023
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Euro 2024 fixtures header
Friday, June 21
Saturday, June 22
Sunday, June 23
Monday, June 24
Tuesday, June 25
Wednesday, June 26
Saturday, June 29
Sunday, June 30
Monday, July 1
Tuesday, July 2
Friday, July 5
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Tables header RHS

Group A

Q Germany Germany22006
2 Switzerland Switzerland21104
3 Scotland flag Scotland20111
4 Hungary Hungary20020

Group B

1 Spain Spain22006
2 Italy Italy21013
3 Albania national flag Albania20111
4 Croatia Croatia20111

Group C

1 England flag England21104
2 Denmark Denmark20202
3 Slovenia Slovenia20202
4 Serbia Serbia20111

Group D

1 Netherlands Netherlands11003
2 France France11003
3 Poland Poland10010
4 Austria Austria10010

Group E

1 Romania Romania11003
2 Slovakia Slovakia11003
3 Belgium Belgium10010
4 Ukraine Ukraine10010

Group F

1 Turkey Turkey11003
2 Portugal Portugal11003
3 Czech Republic Czech Republic10010
4 Georgia Georgia10010

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