Gareth Southgate gives Reece James injury update after Chelsea star withdraws from England squad

Reece JamesGetty
  • Southgate gives update on James' injury
  • Defender has returned to Chelsea
  • Will miss the clash against Ukraine

WHAT HAPPENED? The Chelsea full-back has withdrawn from the England squad and will miss their second Euro 2024 qualifying game against Ukraine on Sunday due to injury.

Southgate has offered an update on James's fitness and says that it is understandable the defender has become extra cautious after the serious injury that ruled him out of the 2022 World Cup last year.

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WHAT THEY SAID: "Reece has gone back, he’s not completely happy with how his leg feels. He was a little bit concerned about that earlier in the week," he told reporters.

"I think, probably for him, the injury after the injury that ruled him out of the World Cup has made him a little more cautious at this moment in time. It probably needs some time.

"It is not unusual to have a serious injury and then smaller injuries on the back of that. With Reece, it is a case of building his resilience to load and him being comfortable with that. With him, the club tends to play a game and we are a bit more cautious on the next one. He is a really good player and he has got absolutely everything and could be anything he wants to be. This is a temporary thing and hopefully, he can overcome that pretty quickly."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: James' injury news comes as a blow to the Three Lions who are already without Luke Shaw due to the red card that he picked up against Italy.


Reece James sad Chelsea Bournemouth 2022-23Getty Images

Gareth Southgate England Italy 2023Getty Images

WHAT NEXT? The 23-year-old defender's condition will be assessed by Chelsea boss Graham Potter before deciding on whether he will be fit to feature in the Blues' next clash against Aston Villa in the Premier League on April 1.