England vs Malta: What does Gareth Southgate say about Anthony Gordon’s chances of being selected with national team?

The young winger has been showing a lot of promise at the club level and has been labelled to become the next big thing in the country.

Anthony Gordon in a file photo. Credits: Twitter/@NUFC
By Karthik Raman | Nov 17, 2023 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

Club football has taken a break, with attention firmly turning to international games. Plenty of players leave their clubs to represent their countries at the highest level in domestic football. However, there will also be debates around certain players who are omitted from the national squads. One such footballer is Newcastle United’s Anthony Gordon. The young winger has been showing a lot of promise at the club level and has been labelled to become the next big thing in the country.

However, Anthony Gordon has not been capped by the senior England side yet and he was not selected by Gareth Southgate for the recent international matches too. In such a scenario, some reports have stated that Scotland are looking to call up the 22-year-old Newcastle winger due to his paternal grandparents. As expected, Southgate was asked about Gordon ahead of their Euro 2024 qualifier against Malta.

Gareth Southgate on Anthony Gordon

“He’s a good player. He was very good with our Under-21s last year. He’s very close, I have to say. I like his attitude, I like the way he works so hard for the team. Of course, I’m sure he was hoping to get a call at this moment, but there are good players playing well in that position on the field. But I think, like a couple of others, they’ve always got to think a little bit further ahead as to, you know, opportunities that can come up. I think for somebody like Anthony that’s eminently possible with us,” Southgate, quoted as saying by skysports.com, ahead of the match.

Speaking about the match, the England head coach also believed it is difficult to please everyone, hence the best way to answer is by getting results on the pitch. “Well, the reality of that is however well we play tomorrow people will just say it’s a lower ranked opponent, so it’ll be irrelevant. People are going to have opinions. I’m probably tired of trying to fight that. In the end, it will be what it is. So, I’ll just let our results and performances speak for themselves. You’re never going to please everybody, so the best way as a football manager is keep winning matches, frankly,” he explained.

With England’s qualification at the next Euros already secured, it is possible that Southgate could rotate his squad to provide opportunities to fringe players. When asked what it is like to leave out players, the England head coach said, “It’s always difficult. Given the number of injuries and pull-outs, we’ve not had to make so many this time, but it’s part of being a manager to make difficult calls.”

He added: “As a player, you never agreed with a manager’s decision to leave you out but you only hope you do it in as respectful a way as possible, with constructive points so they can go away and work on things. We’re blessed to have so much depth in certain positions. You always have to adapt as you never know what’s going to come your way. We’ve lost more players than normal – and there are some long-term injuries too – but there are opportunities for those coming in. We’re looking for the right balance from the qualities we have but also have the right structure behind that.”

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