England boss Gareth Southgate has revealed that Raheem Sterling told him that he didn’t feel he was in good enough form to represent England in their upcoming qualifiers.
Southgate announced his 25-man squad this afternoon for England’s upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers against Malta and North Macedonia in mid-June and this is the second selection in a row that Sterling hasn’t made the squad, with injury keeping him out of the last qualifiers against Italy and Ukraine back in March.
In Sterling’s place are the likes of Jack Grealish, Marcus Rashford and Crystal Palace attacker Eberechi Eze, whose six goals and one assist, coupled with some on the whole impressive performances since April have seen him rewarded with a call-up and he will be hoping for his first ever Three Lions appearance during the qualifiers.
Sterling’s omission from Southgate’s latest squad isn’t one of too much surprise, with Chelsea having a rough time of it in the past few months, and Southgate revealed to the press during his team announcement (via Football Daily) that it was actually the winger’s decision to give up his place in the squad as he felt he wasn’t in the right place formwise.
Despite his recent double against Nottingham Forest, Sterling has decided to steer clear of an 83rd England call-up
“I spoke with Raheem a week or so ago, just for a general catchup. He told me he wasn’t happy with his condition physically, he’s been dealing with a hamstring problem.
“We didn’t get to chat about whether he should or shouldn’t be included, it is him that doesn’t think he is operating at the level he needs to be at.”
Some fair honesty on show from the 28-year old, as his omission will hopefully allow for some other players to take centre stage for their nation next month.