Gareth Southgate says the England medical staff is ‘pleased’ with Harry Maguire’s progress toward being ready for the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 opener against Croatia.
The 28-year-old sustained an ankle injury in Manchester United’s victory against Aston Villa on 9 May and was forced to miss the balance of the Red Devils’ season, including their Europa League final defeat to Villarreal.
There are still doubts over whether he will be totally healthy in time to start in England’s backline for this summer’s Euro 2020 competition. However, England manager Southgate has expressed optimism about Maguire’s prospects of returning for England’s first match against Croatia on June 13, stating that the medical staff is ‘pleased’ with his recuperation and that he should be available.
“That is when he may reintegrate into the group and advance… I’ve chosen a team on the assumption that if we don’t get him, we’ll get guys. If he is healthy and available for us, that is a plus,” Southgate told the Mirror.
“With every ailment, it is critical to make a 100 percent prediction. His medical staff is happy with his improvement, particularly during the previous several days.
“We know there’s always that risk but all of the guide is that he should be available.”
Southgate also addressed Trent Alexander-thigh Arnold’s injury, which prompted the Liverpool star to withdraw from the camp. The England manager was reassured that the injury was not as bad as first anticipated, but he is devastated for the defender, who will be unable to participate in the Euro 2020 adventure.
“The one thing I was pleased with was that immediately following the game, I disliked the appearance of the injury,” Southgate said. “At the very least, it seems as if Trent will be ready for preseason and next season.
“So that is a minuscule – minuscule – positive aspect of the situation. Naturally, he was enraged, deeply disappointed. Everyone is thinking about him throughout such times. It’s heartbreaking, really, for any player to get to the eve of a major tournament, be named in the squad, and then miss out through injury.
“You understand how rare these opportunities are – even if he is a young player who will have them again. This is a very trying time for him. Naturally, this is a major disappointment for us as well.
“However, you can’t help but feel for Trent in this situation.”