Leeds , Sep 1 : England football coach Gareth Southgate on Sunday defended midfielder Jesse Lingard's inclusion in the England squad for Euro 2020 qualifiers.
Lingard has been going through a lean patch as he last scored a goal for his club Manchester United in December 2018.

The England coach even defended United's coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, saying the club has a pretty young team.

"I think you would have to say I have seen him have better spells for United. I think Ole has a young, energetic team, and I think Jesse is pressing and the energy he brings to that has been an important part of what they have tried to do in the first few games," Goal.com quoted Southgate as saying.

"The inclusion of Jesse for us is partly because his form for us has always been good. I know there was stats on his goals. He was only involved in four games for us last season because of injury - two starts and two off the bench," he added.

Southgate said that performances for the club is a parameter for selecting the national team, but he defended Lingard saying the player has been good for England whenever he has stepped out to the park.

"When you are selecting a team, there is half an eye on club form but also I do not remember a game where he has been really poor for us," Southgate said.

Manchester United is currently placed at the fourth position in the Premier League standings.

England will take on Bulgaria in their first match of the Euro 2020 qualifiers on September 7.


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(Posted on 02 September 2019, 1675574359 3O236O47O240)