Manchester City star Phil Foden has been tipped to return to the starting lineup for England against Germany in the Euro 2020 last 16 clash on Tuesday, while Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount also has a chance of being involved despite training alone for a week because of COVID-19 protocols.
Foden started England’s first two games of the tournament against Croatia and Scotland, but with Gareth Southgate’s team already through to the knockout stages by the time they faced Czech Republic, the 21-year-old dropped out of the matchday squad altogether as a precaution against suspension.
Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka got the nod instead and impressed, but Sky Sports reports that Foden is ‘increasingly likely’ to reclaim his starting place ahead of challenges from Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho, with Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling set to keep their places.
Mount, meanwhile, missed the narrow win over the Czechs after he and Ben Chilwell were forced to isolate as a result of an extended period of close contact with Chelsea clubmate Billy Gilmour, who went on to test positive for coronavirus, after the Scotland game.
Mount had also started England’s first two games and could yet immediately return to the XI to face Germany, despite his isolation lasting until the day before the game at Wembley.
It is said Southgate may leave that decision until the last minute. But while Mount will miss England’s final tactical meeting on Monday, just over 24 hours before kick-off, he will continue to be included remotely via video link to ensure he is up to speed on the game plan.
There have been suggestions ahead of the game that England could try and match Germany tactically by reintroducing a third centre back into the team and converting full-backs into wing-backs, as was seen en-route to the 2018 World Cup semi-finals.
But if Southgate still wishes to start with three forwards, he will be limited to only two central midfielders. That means either Mount doesn’t get his place back just yet or one of Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips is left out. However, the latter scenario may leave England vulnerable midfield.