Southgate hints at Trippier recall to remedy England problem

Gareth Southgate could be set to recall Kieran Trippier to the England team to face Germany in the last 16.

The Atletico Madrid started at left-back in England’s opener against Croatia before being left on the bench against both Scotland and Czech Republic.

But the Daily Mail claims the 30-year-old could be set to return to the starting XI as he looks to improve England’s set piece delivery.

Nine of England’s 12 goals at the World Cup 2018 came from set pieces but they are yet to take advantage of that strength this summer.

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Trippier – who scored the memorable free-kick in the semi final of the World Cup against Croatia – is viewed by Southgate as a dead-ball expert and could prove to be the difference-maker in a game of fine margins.

Southgate said after the 1-0 victory over Czech Republic: “Our delivery hasn’t been good, really.

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“There was the one where John Stones hit the post (against Scotland) which was bang on the money and Trippier’s delivery in the first game was excellent, but we haven’t matched that since.

“It’s quite rare for us. We have gone four or five matches without a set-piece goal and that’s an area where we can improve upon.”

Southgate could revert to a back five on Tuesday, to dampen the threat of Germany’s raiding wing-backs.

That’s a move Gary Neville is on board with, though the pundit did not include Trippier in his starting XI.

He believes Southgate should mimic Germany’s formation and switch to 3-4-3, but would deploy Reece James at right wing-back, with Kyle Walker moving into a more central role.

Neville would persist with Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice in midfield, with Bukayo Saka keeping his place on the right wing, along with Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling.

‘Wing backs to match up and engage Germany’s,’ Neville wrote on Twitter. ‘Saka and Sterling left higher in channels vs Germany wide centre backs. Rice and Philips onto Kroos and Gundogan.’

It would mean no place for Aston Villa star Jack Grealish, who impressed and set up Sterling’s winner against Czech Republic last time out.

Mason Mount would also miss out, with the Chelsea star currently in self-isolation – along with Ben Chilwell – and only allowed to train with the rest of the squad on the day of the Germnay game.


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