England: Southgate reveals reason for snubbing Henderson, Rashford – ‘it’s as simple as that’

Lewis Oldham
England squad
Marcus Rashford and Jordan Henderson with England's crest.

Gareth Southgate has revealed why he’s opted to leave Marcus Rashford and Jordan Henderson out of his provisional 33-man England squad for Euro 2024.

Southgate has named a provisional 33-man England squad for the European Championships. You can view the full squad here. 

Before the tournament gets underway, the Three Lions have friendlies against Bosnia (June 3) and Iceland (June 7).

Southgate will whittle his squad down to 26 players after the second friendly, with England‘s first Euro 2024 group stage match scheduled for June 16 against Serbia.

Despite including 33 players, there were still several notable absentees from the squad, with the most newsworthy perhaps being Southgate‘s decision to leave out Rashford and Henderson.

“It’s as simple as that…”

Rashford was one of the best players in the Premier League last season as he scored 30 goals across all competitions.

But his form dipped massively during the 2023/24 campaign. His attitude has been questioned at times and his poor performances have fuelled speculation linking him with a move away from Man Utd in the summer.

The 26-year-old’s disastrous season has also resulted in him missing out on Euro 2024, with Man City’s Jack Grealish and Newcastle United’s Anthony Gordon among the players selected ahead of him.

When asked why Rashford was not picked, Southgate admitted that there was a “simple” reason behind his decision.

“These are difficult calls. With Marcus, I just feel other players in that area have had better seasons. It’s as simple as that,” Southgate said.

👉 No room for ‘pub player’ Harry Kane in England’s best front four for Euro 2024
👉 Report claims Man City star ‘inflamed’ White, Holland conflict as ‘real truth’ on England snub emerges

Henderson meanwhile has slipped down the England pecking order as this season has progressed.

His move to Saudi Pro League side Al-Ettifaq last summer has contributed to his downfall. Henderson was highly criticised at the time of this transfer as he had previously been a major advocate for the LGBTQ+ community.

📣TO THE COMMENTS! Who should/shouldn’t have been included in the England squad? Join the debate here

The former Liverpool captain struggled to settle in the Middle East and joined Eredivisie giants Ajax during this year’s winter transfer window.

Injuries have limited Henderson to just 12 appearances for Ajax and Southgate revealed the midfielder’s lack of game time was the “determining factor” in his decision to omit him from his England squad.

“[Jordan] Henderson’s given himself every chance,” Southgate added.

“The determining factor was the injury he picked up in the last camp. He missed five weeks and wasn’t able to get back up to the level of intensity. It was a difficult decision.”

He continued: “[Jordan Henderson] will be a miss. He’s an exceptional individual and fantastic human being. He’s been in that leadership role for a long time.

“We’ve got young players with a lot of caps. There’s no reason why young players can’t lead.”

READ NEXT: Jordan Henderson bumwash has trashed his reputation in five Saudi Arabian months