Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher had a heated debate about Trent Alexander-Arnold’s involvement for England at Euro 2020.
The Liverpool defender was left out of Gareth Southgate’s squad for last month’s 2022 World Cup qualifiers as Kieran Trippier, Reece James and Kyle Walker were selected ahead of him.
Both Neville and Carragher picked Alexander-Arnold in their 23-man squads for the Euros this summer, however, there was a debate over whether he would make the starting XI.
The pair’s back-and-forth, which occurred on Sky Sports, is below.
Neville: “I’m saying to myself, who are England going to be playing? Germany, Belgium, France, Portugal.
“Who is [Alexander-Arnold] going to be playing against? [Eden] Hazard, [Kylian] Mbappe, [Leroy] Sane, [Diogo] Jota, [Cristiano] Ronaldo.
“Who do they want to play against? James, Walker or Trent? They’ll say, ’I’ll let Trent go forward, he’ll leave space in behind me. I’ll have Trent.’”
Carragher: “Well you’re making the case for him not going. Would you not take him?”
Neville: “No, I personally would take him.”
Gary Neville’s England Euro 2020 squad
Carragher: “Hang on, you’ve just made the biggest case I’ve ever heard in my life for the reason why he wouldn’t go and why Gareth Southgate’s not picking him!”
Neville: “Did you listen to the question I was asked? I was asked the question why would Gareth not take him – so I’m answering that question!”
Carragher: “You would take Trippier ahead of him? I’m asking you. You’re a right-back!”
Neville: “Let me finish the answer to the first question!”
Carragher: “We might not have time. What would you do? Forget Gareth Southgate.”
Neville: “My point is, I’m thinking, if he is playing against Mbappe, Hazard, Sane, Ronaldo or Jota in the semi-final of a tournament this summer – who does Gareth Southgate want out on that pitch?”
Carragher: “Who does Gary Neville want?”
Neville: “I’ve been asked a different question, give me a break!”
Carragher: “Oh honestly…”
Jamie Carragher’s England Euro 2020 squad
Neville: “I think the reason he won’t take him is because he’s there to win a tournament – he will trust the players like Walker, Trippier in a back three or with a wing-back, maybe James because he has more power and strength to handle an Mbappe or Ronaldo.
“I don’t think he will take him.”
Carragher: “If you pick Kieran Trippier ahead of Trent Alexander-Arnold, that’s embarrassing.”
Meanwhile, Neville and Carragher made surprise omissions from their 23-man England squads.
Borussia Dortmund ace Jadon Sancho, in-form West Ham star Jesse Lingard and Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka did not make the cut.
Sancho would appear to be very unlucky not to make Southgate’s squad given he has scored 35 goals and registered 39 assists in the past three Bundesliga seasons.
Explaining his decision, Carragher said: “Jadon Sancho is playing at a really high level and his numbers are off the scale with Borussia Dortmund.
“I’ve just never been fully convinced in an England shirt yet and, with the emergence of Phil Foden and Jack Grealish as part of the front three, someone had to miss out.
“Saka, I wanted him to be in it. He can play so many positions and that in some people’s eyes might be a strength. But for me it was almost a weakness.
“At first I had him in ahead of [Ben] Chilwell but I was thinking, if Luke Shaw got injured in the first game, would you really want Saka, who sometimes plays on the right wing, as the left-back in a back four? I looked at that and I think I went with the safe option.”
Neville added: “I love Saka but who would you leave out? That’s the question you’ve got to ask.
“Would you leave Grealish out? Would you leave Foden out? Would you leave [Mason] Mount out? No, I wouldn’t.”
Discussing Lingard’s omission, Carragher said: “I just think with Mount, Foden and Grealish, not exactly the same but those types of players, I couldn’t leave one of them out.
“Lingard’s probably got the energy and the pace really but I couldn’t get him in.”
Neville added: “I came to the same conclusion. If you’ve got Mount, Grealish, Sterling and Foden, you’ve got enough players who can play in that connection position and do that role.”