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England 'leaked team news' for Croatia clash as Gareth Southgate springs four surprises

Gareth Southgate is set to snub both Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell by starting Kieran Trippier as an unorthodox left-back for England’s opening Euro 2020 match against Croatia, a leaked line-up has revealed.

The Three Lions head coach has opted for the right-footed Trippier on the left side of a back four which does not include Harry Maguire.

There had been some suggestion that Southgate might use a back five for some solidity in Maguire’s absence. However, he has instead continued with the 4-2-3-1 formation used in England’s most recent games.

Manchester United centre-back Maguire was in a race to be fit for the first game after suffering an ankle injury while playing for the Red Devils in early May.

The 28-year-old has not played since and appears to have lost his battle to feature against Croatia at Wembley.

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The line-up, revealed by The Athletic, also reveals that Raheem Sterling starts instead of Marcus Rashford on the left of the attack. Fans’ favourite Jack Grealish does not start either.

Sterling was inconsistent for Manchester City last season, scoring 10 Premier League goals and not always being part of Pep Guardiola’s starting 11.

Rashford and Grealish were excellent during matches against Austria and Romania, with Grealish winning the penalty with which Rashford scored against the latter.

The full team includes Jordan Pickford in goal with Kyle Walker, Stones, Mings and Trippier along the back four.

Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice both make their tournament debuts in a midfield duo that does not include Jordan Henderson.

The Liverpool captain is also unfit having played just 45 minutes of football since February.

Southgate has opted for a three-pronged attacking midfield of Phil Foden, Mason Mount and Sterling behind captain Harry Kane.

The remaining 15 players in Southgate’s squad can be named as substitutes. 

Asked on Friday if he already knew his starting 11 to face Croatia, Southgate said: “Yes. I’ll be completely honest, you are 75-80 per cent there going back a reasonable period of time, days not weeks, but you do have to go off your eyes.

“We talked about the heat, about the physical demands of winning at this level. Seeing how players present on a day to day basis is influential. We don’t just ignore what we see in the training sessions.

“So, although we were fairly clear right up until the end of the week you keep an open mind on that.

“In the end you hope that you make the right choices, but we are very clear on the direction of travel for Sunday.”

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed