Trent Alexander-Arnold has been retained by England manager Gareth Southgate for this month’s Nations League games, amid scrutiny over his Liverpool form.
Southgate has named a 28-man squad for the upcoming clashes with Italy (Sep 23) and Germany (Sep 26), with a distinct lack of Liverpool players present.
That is Alexander-Arnold, who has endured widespread criticism for his defensive efforts so far this season as Liverpool have struggled for form.
The right-back has certainly warranted scrutiny over his role, though whether he can be blamed as strongly as he has in some quarters is doubtful.
Southgate has never been fully convinced by Alexander-Arnold – who has struggled to hold down a regular role for his country despite his status as one of the world’s best right-backs – but the England manager has kept the faith for September.
Elsewhere in the England squad there is a first-ever call-up for Brentford striker Ivan Toney, while Eric Dier is back for the Three Lions.
England squad for Italy and Germany games
Defenders: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Ben Chilwell (Chelsea), Conor Coady (Everton, loan from Wolves), Eric Dier (Tottenham), Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace), Reece James (Chelsea), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Luke Shaw (Man United), John Stones (Man City), Fikayo Tomori (AC Milan), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle), Kyle Walker (Man City)
Forwards: Tammy Abraham (Roma), Jarrod Bowen (West Ham), Phil Foden (Man City), Jack Grealish (Man City), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Raheem Sterling (Chelsea), Ivan Toney (Brentford)