Gareth Southgate explains dropping Marcus Rashford for England vs Senegal | Football


Gareth Southgate has returned Marcus Rashford to the substitutes’ bench for the Senegal clash (Picture: Getty Images)

Marcus Rashford starts England’s clash with Senegal at the World Cup on Sunday on the substitutes’ bench despite scoring twice in the 3-0 win over Wales last time out.

Bukayo Saka has replaced Rashford in England’s front three as Gareth Southgate shuffles his pack in their first knockout contest in Qatar, coming back into the team after starting against Iran and USA, scoring twice in the first of those contests.

Explaining his decision, Gareth Southgate told ITV: ‘He [Saka] was excellent in our first two matches, we think Marcus was also very good and it’s great to have him to be able to come into the game as it opens up.

‘We’ve, of course, got an embarrassment of riches in that area of the pitch. But we’ve liked Bukayo’s performances and we think Phil [Foden] and him deserve their opportunity.

Elsewhere the team is unchanged, with Jordan Pickford in goal, a back four of Kyle Walker, John Stones, Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw. Declan Rice, Jude Bellingham and Jordan Henderson make up the midfield, with Saka joining Harry Kane and Phil Foden up top.

Rahsford has been impressive when given the chance by Southgate so far in Qatar, already scoring three goals in this tournamnet.

He came off the bench and netted during the 6-2 rout over Iran and scored twice when given the opportunity to start in the 3-0 win over Wales.

His free-kick opener was memorable, before producing an excellent individual effort to round off the scoring against the Welsh.

The Manchester United forward would have hoped that his display was enough to keep him in the starting XI, but he will have to make do with starting on the bench on Sunday.

It is not like his World Cup is over, though, having already proved to be in fine form and Southgate will likely turn to him off the bench if England need a goal.

Gary Lineker said on the BBC of the decision to drop Rashford: ‘I’m astonished to be honest.’ Rio Ferdinand added: ‘Imagine hitting red hot form and then having to sit on the bench, it would blow my head off.’

MORE : Trent Alexander-Arnold sends message to Gareth Southgate over ‘underrated’ England star Marcus Rashford

MORE : Joe Cole wants Gareth Southgate to bring Mason Mount back for England against Senegal

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