Southgate reveals why he left Shaw out of England's Nations League finals squad

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The Manchester United left-back is a notable absentee from the 27-man Three Lions squad, with Ben Chilwell and Danny Rose called up instead

Gareth Southgate has revealed that it was not a hard decision to leave Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw out of his England squad for the Nations League finals, insisting Ben Chilwell and Danny Rose are ahead of him.

The full-back was named United's Player of the Year for the 2018-19 season and was one of the few Red Devils players to have performed consistently well in what was a disappointing campaign for the club.

The 23-year-old has won eight caps for the Three Lions, with his last coming in the 2-1 home defeat to Spain in Nations League qualifying back in September 2018.

But Southgate has decided to overlook him for the 27-man provisional squad he has named for the Nations League finals, with England preparing for a semi-final meeting with Netherlands on June 6.

Instead, the Three Lions boss has opted to go with Leicester City star Chilwell and Tottenham defender Rose as his recognised left full-back options, with Fabian Delph, who is also in, another capable of playing in that position.

And Southgate insists that, despite Shaw's performances for United over the 2018-19 season, it ultimately wasn't a tough decision not to include him as part of the selection.

He told reporters: "No [it wasn't a hard decision], I think Ben Chilwell and Danny Rose have been excellent.

"They're ahead and have played particularly well. They've given everything for the England shirt."

Leicester midfielder James Maddison is another who misses out although Jesse Lingard is back in having been absent from the last round of internationals.

On the Manchester United star's inclusion, Southgate added: "He would be the first to say he has a difficult end of the season and has an opportunity now to put it behind him."

Another who will be unavailable to Southgate is Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

The 23-year-old won eight caps for his country in 2018, with 10 to his name in total, and was making a big impact for Maurizio Sarri's Blues towards the end of their 2018-19 campaign.

As confirmed by Goal , the midfielder has, however, ruptured his Achilles during a friendly match against New England Revolution  and will therefore miss the Nations League, as well as the Europa League final against Arsenal on May 29.

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On Loftus-Cheek, the England manager said: "I went to bed last night and Ruben was in the squad and playing brilliantly, now he misses a major European final - I am really disappointed for him in particular.

Reflecting on his squad picks in general, with Southgate due to cut the 27 players named down to 23 prior to heading to Portugal for the meeting with the Netherlands: "We're really looking forward to the opportunity to finish the summer off.

"It's a great chance to build on the last 12 months. It's a little bit of a larger squad than usual. We've got a lot of unknowns. [Chelsea winger Callum] Hudson-Odoi and Loftus-Cheek would definitely be in this squad."

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