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Why defender missed England training as midfield shock expected for Wales clash

The Three Lions need to avoid defeat to ensure that they head into the round of 16


Gareth Southgate ponders England World Cup 2022 squad selection

England trained for the final time ahead of their final group B game against Wales on Tuesday, but Gareth Southgate has still not been able to have a training session with all 26 of his squad members since flying out to Doha.

James Maddison returned to training after their 0-0 draw with the USA on Friday, the Leicester attacker having been nursing a knee injury since the final Premier League game before the break, but it was Arsenal defender Ben White’s turn to miss out ahead of the clash with Wales.

However, England moved to allay fears that it was a serious issue, revealing that the defender was only missing through illness rather than having picked up an injury while on International duty, undoubtedly much to the relief of Arsenal fans worldwide.

It comes amid rumours that Gareth Southgate could opt for experience over youth in the middle of the pitch against Gareth Bale and co., with England needing to take just a point from their final group game to ensure qualification, albeit not top spot in the group.

Wales, on the other hand, need a heavy victory after they fell to a 2-0 defeat to Iran in their second group game, leaving them with just a point to their name.

With this in mind, Sky Sports report that Jordan Henderson will start over young starlet Jude Bellingham, who he replaced after 70 minutes in their most recent stalemate.

Elsewhere, Southgate has insisted that Phil Foden remains a big part of the England set up after criticism that he was an unused substitute against the USA, telling the media that “He was into the first game, we decided not to put him into the second. But he is going to play an important part in this tournament for us, there is no question about that”.

With that in mind, it could be a much-changed England deployed against Wales.

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Ben Browning

Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.



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