World Cup Qualifiers: Southgates names 25-man squad, Bamford earns first call-up

Leeds United forward Patrick Bamford earned his maiden call-up to the national team as Gareth Southgate announced a 25-man England squad for next month’s World Cup qualifiers on Thursday.

On Bamford’s selection, Southgate said, “There was an opportunity for us in the forward areas and now is an opportunity for Patrick. I think his progress with Leeds United has been excellent.”

Bamford had scored 17 goals in the 2020-21 Premier League for Leeds United, the club’s first season in top-tier English football in 16 years.

READ MORE: World Cup Qualifiers: Belgium resists overhaul of ageing squad after Euro 2020 disappointment

England is set to first face Hungary at the Puskas Arena on September 2. The Three Lions will then be up against Andorra at Wembley Stadium on September 5. After hosting Andorra, England will travel to Poland for the third qualifier on September 8.

From the Euro 2020 England squad that made it to the final at Wembley against Italy, Southgate has left out goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, defenders Ben Chilwell and Ben White, midfielder Phil Foden and forward Marcus Rashford, the last two missing out due to injuries.

Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold, Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope and Manchester United midfielder Jesse Lingard have been recalled to the side.

However, young Manchester United forward Mason Greenwood was not included in the squad. “Mason Greenwood is in our thoughts. We’re all aligned, Mason, the club, his family and us. The best thing for him after these first few games is to stay with his club. It’s clear on his performances he’d warrant being in the squad, ” said Southgate.

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