Rio Ferdinand has told Gareth Southgate why Reece James is ahead of Trent Alexander-Arnold


The Reece James vs Trent Alexander-Arnold debate could be put to bed once and for all tomorrow.

That’s because England boss Gareth Southgate is going to announce his 26-man squad for Euro 2020, which gets underway next week, cutting seven players from his extended training squad.

One of his biggest decisions is at right-back with James, Alexander-Arnold and Kieran Trippier and Kyle Walker all in the 33-man squad and vying for places, with reports claiming the decision has already been made.

A report from ESPN claims Southgate has decided to axe Alexander-Arnold from his squad, and to go with James and Trippier at the right-back position, a decision that will likely not go down well in Liverpool.


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But as well as sending James to the Euros, it also could end a long debate over which one of the Chelsea and Liverpool stars is the better of the two right-backs.

James likely solidified his place with a superb performance in the Champions League final last weekend as Chelsea lifted their second title in the competition with a 1-0 win over Manchester City in Porto.

And after the game, BT Sport pundit Rio Ferdinand praised James for his performance and all-but explained why the Chelsea star is heading to the Euros – if the reports are accurate – and indeed why he is ahead of Alexander-Arnold.

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“He’s a product of the youth academy and we’ve seen some people questioning him, for Chelsea and England,” said Ferdinand after the final.

“Well, tonight he performed on the biggest stage and was the standout, he was immense. He backs himself in one-v-one situations.

“If you’re going to play at the top level you have to do that. Today he became a man. Today he answered all those questions.”

Southgate is set to announce the final England squad at 3pm on Tuesday, when we will find out whether James has indeed made the cut.





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