James and Shaw set to start for England against Scotland

Date published: Friday 18th June 2021 10:39 - Will Ford

Reece James and Luke Shaw are reportedly set to start England’s clash against Scotland on Friday.

Gareth Southgate opted for Kyle Walker and Kieran Trippier as his full-backs in the opener against Croatia – a decision met with some consternation.

But Southgate’s decision was justified as England ran out 1-0 winners against the team that had knocked them out of the semi-finals of the World Cup.

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Both James and Shaw have enjoyed excellent seasons for Chelsea and Manchester United respectively and would provide more attacking impetus should they start the game against Scotland.

And The Telegraph claims they will be in the starting XI for the Three Lions on Friday.

Southgate hinted he could be looking to tweak his team when asked about his preparations for this Friday’s game, though he also added that he’s keen to reward the players who performed so well in England’s Euro 2020 opener last Sunday.

“Definitely [the team will be chosen based on the opposition], every opponent plays in a different style and tactically has a different approach,” he told reporters. “Scotland for the majority of their games have played with a back three and of course they may change, but you are preparing with that in mind.

“The spaces with the ball are different as well, so that is always the balance of we’ve got a good squad.

“We want to involve people in the tournament, we’ve got to show trust in them. But also when you’ve had a win there is something about rewarding players for that achievement and keeping continuity and those are the decisions I’ve got to make ahead of the game.”

Southgate has another defensive selection dilemma ahead of him with Harry Maguire now back in full training following a lengthy injury lay-off.

The Manchester United man hasn’t played since picking up an ankle injury against Aston Villa at the beginning of May.

“Harry will be involved tomorrow,” Southgate said. “The decision we have got to make is whether he is ready to start,” Southgate said.

“We are really pleased with his progress, he has trained with the team for four or five days now and had no reaction. Each session he is involved in he gets more confident. He is on a really good path.”


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