Sole-capped Shelvey and Vardy called up for England Euro qualifiers
After originally postponing the announcement, England head coach Roy Hodgson has finally given out his 22-man squad selection for his nation’s upcoming Euro 2016 Group E qualifiers in San Marino (on September 5th) and then against Switzerland (Sept 8th) at Wembley.
Perhaps the slight surprises are sole-capped duo Jonjo Shelvey, whose last appearance was back in 2012 against the tiny country in Italy’s mainland, and Jamie Vardy, who has kept his place in the set-up after featuring against Republic of Ireland in June.
The pair have managed less than 40 minutes in a senior Three Lions shirt combined, but have highly impressed for respective Premier League clubs Swansea City and Leicester City this and last season.
Other England (12/1 Euro 2016 joint-fourth favourites) recalls, meanwhile, are Jack Butland, Michael Carrick, Harry Kane, Ryan Mason, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Luke Shaw and John Stones.
Usual suspects such as captain Wayne Rooney, Joe Hart, Raheem Sterling and Gary Cahill have all kept their places since the last matches against Republic of Ireland and Slovenia.
The Three Lions are without injured regulars Leighton Baines, Danny Welbeck and Jack Wilshere, and missing that latter pair is a big blow to Hodgson, as the Arsenal duo have performed well on the road to the France finals.
— England (@england) August 30, 2015
“On this occasion we are obviously missing some players from the June matches,” Hodgson said. “However this is compensated by the fact we have players who weren’t available over the summer.
“Jonjo Shelvey gets another chance as he has been very impressive since the start of the season whilst Ryan Mason has been unlucky with us – he picked up an injury the last time he was in the England squad.
“This latest squad shows we are working a good number of players with a claim to be England regulars and secure a place in Euro 2016.
“Before that there are two matches we must focus on. The players must keep going, play well and look to win every match. I don’t want any let up and we want to win both these games.”
England currently top their pool, six points ahead of second-placed upcoming opponents Switzerland, who they beat 2-0 in the away fixture, having won all six of their matches to date. Estonia (home) and Lithuania (away) will be their final two group games before the finals.
England’s 22-man squad to face San Marino and Switzerland
Goalkeepers: Joe Hart (Manchester City), Jack Butland (Stoke City), Tom Heaton (Burnley).
Defenders: Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), Kieran Gibbs (Arsenal), Gary Cahill (Chelsea), Chris Smalling (Manchester United), John Stones (Everton), Phil Jagielka (Everton).
Midfielders: Michael Carrick (Manchester United), James Milner (Liverpool), Ross Barkley (Everton), Jonjo Shelvey (Swansea City), Ryan Mason (Tottenham), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arsenal), Fabian Delph (Manchester City).
Forwards: Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Wayne Rooney (Manchester United), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Jamie Vardy (Leicester City), Theo Walcott (Arsenal).