Gary Lineker takes issue with Gareth Southgate England squad as ‘superb’ star misses out

Gareth Southgate on Jarrod Bowen's England call up

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Gary Lineker has raised his eyebrows at Gareth Southgate’s decision to leave out Eric Dier from the England squad on Tuesday afternoon ahead of the Three Lions’ four crunch Nations League clashes later this campaign.

Dier was instrumental in Tottenham’s bid to finish in the top four, which they achieved on the final day of the season with a 5-0 win over Norwich. The defender, who has 45 caps, forged a superb partnership with Cristian Romero and Ben Davies towards the end of the season which ultimately earned Spurs a place in the Champions League for the first time in three seasons.

However, with England’s games against Germany, Italy and Hungary on the horizon, Dier has been snubbed again by Southgate. And Lineker aired his confusion at the incident with a simple yet damning tweet.

“Yes, he’s been superb lately,” Lineker tweeted in support of the defender by replying to a question asking whether Dier should have travelled with the squad. Southgate spoke before last summer’s Euro 2020 tournament about his decision to leave the player out of his squad. The England boss acknowledged that whilst Dier was a key player, he did not feature enough for Spurs last season to be included.

“Yes, definitely. He’s a man who I have much respect for,” Southgate said. “He’s been a key player in some of our biggest moments and unfortunately I don’t think his season has been long enough to be in the squad. That’s a difficult call because I know how much he brings to the whole group.

“When you’re at a tournament those team players who put the team first are critical. It wasn’t an easy conversation but he’s an outstanding professional and he took it in a really professional way.” And Tottenham’s on-loan keeper Pierluigi Gollini also expressed his confusion at Dier’s omission from the England squad back in March.

The Italian posted a photo of the defender and tagged England alongside a shrugging emoji, seemingly baffled at how his team-mate was left out. And he has played regularly under Antonio Conte but has still not been included by Southgate in the latest squad.

Conor Coady, Marc Guehi, Harry Maguire, John Stones, Fikayo Tomori and Ben White are the defenders who earned a place in Southgate’s side ahead of Dier.

And the Tottenham ace will feel aggrieved that he did not make the squad over the majority of those players. Spurs only had one played called up in England captain Harry Kane.

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