Gareth Southgate approaches Ben White over an England recall following his mysterious World Cup departure… with the Three Lions boss keen to find out his international aspirations
- Arsenal defender Ben White was part of England’s World Cup squad in Qatar
- But he left the squad midway through the tournament, citing personal reasons
- Gareth Southgate sounded out White over whether he would be open to a recall
Gunners defender White left the squad midway through their stint in Qatar with the Football Association citing ‘personal reasons’ for his sudden exit.
There has not been an official explanation as to why White left the group during the tournament.
The versatile defender was not selected in the only squad since the World Cup to add further doubt over his international future.
However, Mail Sport understands Southgate has sought to discover whether White, who has been one of Arsenal’s most impressive performers this season, would be open to a recall.
Arsenal’s Ben White has been sounded out for an England recall ahead of next month’s games
England boss Gareth Southgate has sought to discover whether White, who has been one of Arsenal’s most impressive performers this season, would be open to a recall
The England boss names his squad for next month’s Euro 2024 fixtures against Malta and North Macedonia on Wednesday and it remains to be seen whether White is included.
But Southgate is understood to have kept the door open to the 25-year-old to resume his international career.
Kyle Walker, the first-choice right-back, is set to be rested for the game in Malta on June 16 due to his likely inclusion in Manchester City’s Champions League final against Inter Milan six days prior.
Reece James is currently injured, while Trent Alexander-Arnold – who was dropped from the previous squad – has finished the season playing in a midfield hybrid role for Liverpool.
Elsewhere, Southgate has made various checks on Brighton captain Lewis Dunk as he considers handing the defender an international recall.
White was in England’s World Cup squad but left the group midway through the tournament
Elsewhere, Brighton captain Lewis Dunk is in contention for recall, five years after his sole cap
Dunk, one of the star performers of Brighton’s excellent season, has one England cap but hasn’t been called up since 2018.
All eyes will be on whether Harry Maguire retains his place in the squad after effectively becoming fourth-choice centre-back at Manchester United.
Aston Villa striker Ollie Watkins is in line for a recall in place of Brentford forward Ivan Toney.
Toney was suspended from all football activity for eight months following multiple breaches of betting regulations.
Crystal Palace attacker Eberechi Eze, Brighton defender Levi Colwill, Nottingham Forest midfielder Morgan Gibbs-White and Aston Villa youngster Jacob Ramsey are also among the names identified for potential senior call-ups by the end of 2023.