Eric Dier call-up as England squad announced for friendlies
Holly Thackeray | November 5, 2015
23-man England squad announced
- England announce squad for upcoming November friendlies versus Spain and France
- Tottenham defensive midfielder Eric Dier receives first call-up
- John Stones and Fabian Delph return to roster after injury
Eric Dier called-up as England squad announced
Roy Hodgson has announced his England squad for the Three Lions’ upcoming prestige friendly games against European giants Spain (November 13th) and France (November 17th), with the most notable addition Tottenham defender Eric Dier.
The Spurs star, although primarily a defender, has been utilised in a deeper midfield role by club manager Mauricio Pochettino this campaign and has shone alongside fellow young-gun Dele Alli, who also received another call-up after impressing on his Three Lions bow.
Hodgson had previously watched the pair take part in Monday night Premier League football, as the duo anchored Tottenham’s midfield in a 3-1 defeat of Aston Villa, will Alli also managing to get on the scoresheet.
After announcing the squad, Hodgson spoke of the duo’s inclusion, stating: “Dier has done really well. We don’t have many defensive central midfielders available to us. This is a good opportunity for him.
“Alli impressed last month and he impressed when he went back to Spurs. He now has another chance with us,” added the former Liverpool boss.
Elsewhere in the squad, Everton centre half John Stones and Manchester City midfield shield Fabian Delph were welcome returnees, having missed out last time due to injury.
Having smoothly secured qualification for Euro 2016 with a perfect 10 victories in the Group stage, the Three Lions (12/1 with Coral to win Euro 2016) can now look ahead and begin planning for the prestigious summer tournament across the Channel.
Coach Hodgson has the chance to test his side against truly elite teams in La Roja (6/1) and Les Bleus (7/2), with the pair two favourites to claim the Euro crown, so these dead-rubbers are expected to be far from friendly.
Despite a perfect record in qualifying, England have faced few sides against which to truly measure their mettle, with a pool including the likes of San Marino and Lithuania.
Speaking to press, Hodgson said: “This is an opportunity to learn more about our players and test ourselves against two top nations ahead of next summer.”
Previous glamour friendlies against Italy and the Republic of Ireland both ended as disappointing draws, so fans will be hoping for improved showings this time around, especially when their French foes visit Wembley.
Hodgson is still unable to field perhaps his ideal starting XI and name his first choice squad, with a handful of both regulars and squad players such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jordan Henderson, Phil Jagielka, Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere struggling with injury and omitted from this selection.
With burgeoning Manchester United left back Luke Shaw also out of action after suffering a leg break in the Champions League, this could be Southampton full back Ryan Bertrand’s chance to stake a claim to the spot, with Arsenal’s Kieran Gibbs his only competition for the position.
England squad in full
Goalkeepers: Jack Butland (Stoke City), Joe Hart (Manchester City), Tom Heaton (Burnley)
Defenders: Ryan Bertrand (Southampton), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool), Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), Phil Jones (Manchester United), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), John Stones (Everton), Kyle Walker (Tottenham Hotspur)
Midfielders: Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur), Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur), Ross Barkley (Everton), Michael Carrick (Manchester United), Fabian Delph (Manchester City), Adam Lallana (Liverpool), James Milner (Liverpool), Jonjo Shelvey (Swansea City), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)
Forwards: Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Read more on Euro 2016 in our archive