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'You know what he's done' – Emotional Southgate reveals why he dropped Maguire

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GARETH SOUTHGATE has revealed that Harry Maguire did not make his Euro 2024 squad due to his injury woes.

The Manchester United star, 31, has not played since April having suffered with a calf issue.

Harry Maguire has been cut from Gareth Southgate's England squad

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Harry Maguire has been cut from Gareth Southgate’s England squadCredit: PA
Southgate, 53, faced the media to explain his decisions

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Southgate, 53, faced the media to explain his decisionsCredit: Getty

Maguire was named in Southgate’s provisional 33-man squad, but was today omitted as the England boss whittled it down to 26.

Lifting the lid on why he felt he could not include his former stalwart, Southgate explained: “Trent (Alexander-Arnold) can play both (midfield and defence), we had nine defenders in the last couple of tournaments so I think we’re the same now.

“That was part of the reason we couldn’t take Harry Maguire. We would’ve had to take a 10th defender, and that balance wouldn’t have been right, it would’ve left us short in other areas.

“Harry has made some progress, but it’s been complicated and we wouldn’t have had him in the group stages. There were too many hurdles to get through without being clear where we might get to.

“Knowing we haven’t got a clean bill of health across the rest of the backline, we need players who are fit and ready to go from the start.

“It was a really difficult call, you know how I feel about Harry, what he’s done for England and for me as a manager. It’s a slightly different case to (Jack) Grealish and (James) Maddison, but it’s no easier.”

Southgate, 53, was then at pains to stress that his Maguire snub was purely down to his physical condition.

He added: “The decision on Harry is totally about his physical condition and his recovery from the injury. There is no other reason as he is one of our strongest centre-backs.

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“In terms of those who can come in, clearly Lewis (Dunk) and Marc (Guehi) played the other night but Ezri Konsa also had an excellent season at Aston Villa.

“We’ve been using him as a full-back in some of the recent games but he also played at centre-half in March and was outstanding. It is his strongest position so there are a number of options and we also have Joe Gomez who can play in a number of positions.”

Jack Grealish and Harry Maguire left out of England’s Euro 2024 squad as Gareth Southgate’s 26-man shortlist is revealed

Southgate did opt to select Luke Shaw, despite the left-back having not played since February.

Explaining his reasoning, he said: “(Shaw) has progressed really well over the past couple of weeks.

“At the moment, we feel he could have some involvement in the second group game (against Denmark), but of course you’ve got to keep hitting the markers.

“He’s had a good volume of work and is operating at good speeds as well so I think you can take one gamble. That’s a gamble where we’ve got enough evidence that it could pay off.

“Positionally, because of what he brings with his experience and the fact that he is a left-footer who can drive forward and give us another attacking option as well, that was a situation we wanted to explore.”

In addition to Maguire, Southgate omitted Jack Grealish, James Maddison, Jarell Quansah, Jarrad Branthwaite and James Trafford.

Southgate did go on to reveal, however, that Quansah has remained on standby with the group.

He said: “Jarell Quansah has stayed with us. He’s not had the experience of an England international at Wembley.

“It’ll be great for him to be us for the game.”Hopefully we’re not needing to call anyone else in.”

The Three Lions host Iceland in their final warm-up game tomorrow night.

How England will line up after big names axed from Euros

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