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England star ruled out of Iceland clash minutes after being named in squad

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LEWIS DUNK is OUT of England’s final warm-up game but IN their Euro 2024 squad.

Dunk missing Friday’s Wembley friendly with Iceland highlights defensive injuries troubling Three Lions’ boss Gareth Southgate.

Lewis Dunk, Ollie Watkins and Adam Wharton all survived the cut

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Lewis Dunk, Ollie Watkins and Adam Wharton all survived the cutCredit: Getty
But Dunk won't be fit for England's final warm-up game

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But Dunk won’t be fit for England’s final warm-up gameCredit: Getty

Harry Maguire is the big absentee from the 26-man squad for Germany because of a calf problem.

But Southgate is “gambling” on Maguire’s Manchester United team-mate Luke Shaw recovering quickly and fully at left-back.

And Brighton centre-back Dunk, 32, has had preparations for his first major international tournament marred by his own calf issue.

Southgate confirmed the Premier League stalwart “won’t be available” against Iceland.

But he stressed Dunk “can train from next week” and that “everyone else” is able to practice on Friday.

Meanwhile, Southgate is showing faith in Shaw partly due to England’s lack of depth at left-back.

He reckons the 28-year-old has “progressed well in the last few weeks”.

Southgate revealed: “We think he can have involvement in the second group game. 

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“He’s had a good volume of work and operating at good speed.

“I think you can take one gamble and that’s a gamble which we have enough evidence on that we can take.

‘You know what he’s done for me’ – Emotional Gareth Southgate reveals why he left Harry Maguire out of England squad

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Harry Maguire

“The decision on Harry [Maguire] 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.

“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. “

Jack Grealish and James Maddison

“Madders [Maddison] and Jack [Grealish] would have provided us with something different as well and they’ve been tough calls.

“They’re calls we’ve gone over and over and over as a group of staff to try to be fair and to try to use the right rationale.

“We back our decisions but we recognise we could have gone a different route. The boys are big characters, fabulous team-mates and great boys to work with.

“It’s sad to have to deliver that news to them.”

Jarrad Branthwaite

“It’s a bit early for Jarrad [Branthwaite]. He has had a fabulous season, it was good to get him on the pitch the other night.

“But of course, in an ideal world, you’d like that balance of left-footers. For him to be in ahead of the others, I don’t think it would have been the right call at this stage.”

Jarell Quansah

“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 fact he has experience and he’s a left-footer that can drive forward too.”

The Three Lions open their Euro campaign against Serbia on June 16.

Then come the last two group matches with Denmark five days later and Slovenia on June 25.

Southgate added: “Part of the reason we couldn’t take Maguire is that he would have been the tenth defender, and that would have meant an unbalance elsewhere 

“We definitely wouldn’t have had him in the group stages … we need cover and need players fit from the start.

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