Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is back in the England squad and Gareth Southgate is happy

Friday 30 Aug 2019
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's last game for England came against the Netherlands in March 2018

Gareth Southgate believes having Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain back in the England squad will be positive both on and off the pitch.

The Liverpool midfielder was named in the squad to face Bulgaria and Kosovo this month, having got back to fitness after a serious injury ruled him out for the 2018 World Cup and the whole of last season.

And the former Arsenal and Southampton man is a player which Southgate admits to being a big fan of.

“I don't think I'd be telling secrets to say that we expected him to come to the World Cup with us and, at that stage, he was likely to be starting in the team,” he revealed.

Oxlade-Chamberlain has won 32 senior caps since his debut back in 2012

“He's been really unfortunate with England a few times with injuries that have ruled him out of tournaments.

“It's a long road back from an injury like that and we knew at the end of last season that it was going to take a bit of time and pre-season the same.

“He's not 100 per cent in rhythm of games yet but I thought he played very well at Southampton for Liverpool, which was a really positive step forward, and I think his qualities can really add to us as a team.”

The 26 year old is also a popular member among the players and staff, as well as giving the Three Lions boss another option from midfield.

“He gives us another attacking talent from a midfield area and a goal threat from those areas,” he added.

“But he works incredibly hard for the team too - you need midfield players who can do all aspects of the game and Alex does that, as well having a personality and a character that adds to the group.

“So we’re really pleased to have him back.”

There's still a small number of tickets remaining for the game with Bulgaria at Wembley on Saturday 7 September. 

By Nicholas Veevers Content Manager - FA Owned Channels