Gareth Southgate to give England star one last-ditch chance to make Euro 2024 squad

Ivan Toney has just two England caps (Photo: Getty)

Ivan Toney will have one last-ditch chance to prove he is worthy of a place in England’s Euro 2024 squad, according to Gareth Southgate.

It has long been known that the 28-year-old is up against Ollie Watkins for the right to be Harry Kane’s understudy at this summer’s European championships.

Both strikers are worthy of inclusion, with Watkins one of the most in-form forwards in the world right now having recorded 27 goals and 13 assists across 53 games for Aston Villa this season.

Toney meanwhile only returned to the pitch in January having been suspended for eight months over betting offences, but scored four goals in his first five matches back for Brentford.

He’s failed to find the back of the net for his club since however, though he did score and impress in the friendly against Belgium in March and stylistically could fill-in for Kane perfectly unlike Watkins.

While there is a chance both will be on the plane to Germany, it seems more likely that one will be cut, with Southgate needing to submit his final 26-man squad by 11pm on Friday – just one hour after England’s friendly with Iceland is slated to finish.

Against Bosnia on Monday, Toney was left on the bench while Watkins started and played 61 minutes before being replaced by Kane, a clear indication that the manager is leaning toward the Villa star.

Toney is battling Ollie Watkins for a place in the England squad (Photo: Getty)

However, Watkins failed to make any real impact on the game and Southgate has now confirmed that Toney will get a shot to impress against Iceland – but unlike his rival, he won’t be in the starting XI.

‘He will be involved in the game on Friday but I have got to get Harry Kane right,’ Southgate said.

‘Sometimes the priorities of what’s required and what you would like to see as well, you can’t achieve all of those objectives – simple as that.’

Kane has just returned from a back injury and with the captain pivotal to the Three Lions, getting him back to full fitness will take priority.

Though the deadline for the 33-man provisional squad to be cut to 26 is on Friday night, further changes can be made up until the tournament begins on 14 June if there is a late injury.

Southgate is sweating on the fitness of Manchester United defenders Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire which could lead to their omission, but which seven players will be left out is still up in the air.

For more stories like this, check our sport page.

Follow Metro Sport for the latest news on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow by Email