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Jordan Henderson to return vs Romania, Harry Maguire unlikely to be fit soon: Gareth Southgate

Jordan Henderson is ready to play the friendly against Romania on Monday whereas Harry Maguire is unlikely to be available till the knock-out stages of Euro 2020

Jordan Henderson in a file photo. (Credit: Twitter/@JHenderson)
By Sreejith C R | Jun 6, 2021 | 3 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

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Jordan Henderson, who missed the friendly match against Austria on Wednesday is set to feature in the match against Romania on Sunday. However, Harry Maguire is unlikely to be fully fit before the knock-out stages of the Euro 2020. England manager Gareth Southgate is giving every possible chance for these two players to be part of the competition.

“The plan, as it was on Wednesday, is that he (Jordan Henderson) will be involved in the game. The last two or three days training have been a lot more positive for him.

“I think the confidence of having a scan that showed no issues has helped him to push forward with his rehabilitation and his training. He’s been visibly happier within himself, I think, and that is a positive sign.”

Jordan Henderson will be key for England in midfield. The lack of a proper holding midfield alternative in his absence is notable. Meanwhile Maguire suffered an ankle ligament injury against Aston Villa last month.

“With any injury, it’s impossible to predict 100%. Our medical team are pleased with his progress, particularly over the last couple of days.

“So we know there is always that risk, but all of the guidance is that he should be available and it’s a case of when he can slot back into training with the group and how quickly we can progress him.

“But of course there is always that risk with any injury that you only have to have one minor setback – and two or three days here or there really, really affects those timelines.

“I’m very realistic about that and we’ve picked a squad on the basis that, if we didn’t have him, we’ve got players to come in. If he’s able to be fit and available then that’s a bonus for us.”

Personal training programme

The Football Association (FA) has set up a “personal training programme indoors to manage load”. Maguire is part of it along with Harry Kane and Bukayo Saka. The latter pair has no injury concerns but Kane will be rested for Sunday’s game.

“He was following an individual programme. Across the group we have three or four players who, on different days, might miss elements of training but there are no concerns.

“I don’t think we’ll involve him. The plan is not to involve him in the game, so that has allowed him to do some gym-based work.”

Seven players who were part of the Champions League final have joined the squad recently. Southgate is happy with their response in training thus far.

Three of them were part of winners Chelsea and the rest were part of runner-ups Manchester City.

“They’ve been excellent. All of the players have picked up immediately, there doesn’t seem to be any overhang at all. The group is in together socially, you can see it at dinner, they’ve enjoyed getting back with their England colleagues.

“If you didn’t know those games had taken place and you weren’t specifically looking for things, then I genuinely don’t think you would know any different.”

Alexander-Arnold’s replacement

They are unlikely to feature in Sunday’s game but Europa League finalists Luke Shaw and Rashford who sat out in the game against Austria are likely to start the game.

The 50-year-old manger expressed his sadness over Trent Alexander-Arnold. The Liverpool right-back injured his thigh on Wednesday against Austria and is now out of the tournament.

“It’s heartbreaking for any player to get to the eve of a major tournament, be named in the squad and then miss out through injury,” he said. “You know how rare these opportunities are. Even though he’s a young player who’s going to have those opportunities again, that’s a really difficult moment for him especially.”

Southgate will name Arnold’s replacement from the list of five stand-by players on Monday. The list has Jesse Lingard, Ben Godfrey, Ollie Watkins, James Ward-Prowse and Ben White on it.

“The one thing I was pleased about, in that immediately after the game I didn’t like the look of the injury, [was that] at least it sounds as though he should be fine for pre-season and for next season. So that is a very small positive in the situation.”

England managed to reach the semi-finals of 2018 FIFA World Cup held at Russia under Sothgate’s coaching. They have continued that fine form heading into the tournament.

They will be hoping to win their first major title since the 1966 World Cup.



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