With the recent form of Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse, it led plenty to speculate that he may receive a recall to Gareth Southgate’s England side for the upcoming European Championship 2020 qualifiers against Czech Republic and Montenegro.
JWP wasn’t in the final squad as announced in midweek and Southgate was quoted from the press conference as saying.
Could @Prowsey16 have been in the squad?
Gareth: "We love Prowsey – this recent spell is his best since we capped him and he's a world-class set-piece taker, but he's only recently got back in the team at @SouthamptonFC."https://t.co/mpPkHvCTji
— England (@England) March 13, 2019
There’s a couple of things wrong with that statement in reality. The 24-year-old’s best form has been more recent granted – three goals in the last three games – but unless my memory is playing tricks, he’s been a regular since the end of December and involved in every game for us under Ralph Hasenhuttl since then.
Even then, he made eight appearances prior to December 8th, yet Southgate has selected two players ahead of him – Fabian Delph & Ruben Loftus-Cheek who combined, have barely 1200 minutes between themselves all season.
Our Academy graduate has six goals in nine games (12 games overall in 2019) whilst Delph has three appearances since the turn of the year. Loftus-Cheek has made 12 appearances this side of the year, but only one of those was a starting appearance.
Now granted you can make arguments about them being different types of players, but if Southgate doesn’t want to continue to look silly and so blatantly run against his own ‘form’ over everything approach to the job (and claiming he won’t favour ‘names’ from supposed ‘top clubs’), he might want to add a little clarification here.
Strange comment from Gareth considering jwp has played more minutes in PL than most of the midfielders he has picked ????????♂️ https://t.co/PJyygdne6g
— Matt Le Tissier (@mattletiss7) March 13, 2019