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Can Jamaal Lascelles Break into the England Squad?

Posted on October 19th, 2017 | No Comments |

Lascelles: His stock is rising rapidly
Lascelles: His stock is rising rapidly
The latest England squad has been announced for the upcoming qualifiers at the beginning of October, with the usual array of names featuring. Gareth Southgate has been labelled as fairly predictable and safe with his selections in recent months, and the announcements regularly divide Premier League fans. Newcastle supporters have been impressed by captain Jamaal Lascelles so far this season, and many feel as though he deserves a call-up to the national side.

The England squad included defenders John Stones, Aaron Cresswell, Gary Cahill and Michael Keane, but there was no place for the Newcastle centre-back who has impressed so far this season. Lascelles is not only commanding at the back but has proved to be the Magpies’ match-winner on two occasions this season, including netting the winner against Stoke in the middle of September.

Fans were surprised when the 23-year-old was named captain by Rafa Benitez at the start of the club’s Championship campaign but he has stepped up to the plate and led by example. He has kept five clean sheets in his 24 Premier League appearances and has a 50% successful tackle rate in the top flight, whilst providing both organisation and determination to the Newcastle back-line. He rarely makes errors and is extremely composed for such a young player and surely deserves a chance in the spotlight.

England have two more games at the beginning of November and if the former Nottingham Forest man continues to catch the eye, he should be able to put himself in the international picture. Chris Smalling continually gets selected by Southgate despite barely featuring for Manchester United, with the defender falling down the pecking order at Old Trafford. Jose Mourinho admitted he was open to offers for the former Fulham man earlier in the year, and Michael Keane has hardly run a tight ship at Everton since his arrival in the summer. Lascelles has been outstanding in comparison.

The 23-year-old has also proved to be a nuisance in the opposition’s box, netting twice already this campaign, and he is both quick and athletic enough to get back and thwart any possibility of a breakaway attack. His dedication and willingness to learn have impressed Rafa Benitez and the Newcastle coaching staff, with the Derby-born defender putting in the extra hours on the training ground to ensure he was ready for the club’s return to the top flight.

The more optimistic Toon Army fans may wish to have a speculative punt on Newcastle to finish in the top four at 200/1 with Betsafe for those looking to bet online, but many supporters will be eyeing up a top half finish this season. Jamaal Lascelles helped guide his side to successive clean sheets in September, with his side conceding just five goals in their opening six matches and the Magpies look strong on their own patch.

Lascelles has definitely done enough to merit an England call-up but has been overlooked by Gareth Southgate on this occasion. He must keep working hard and continue to impress in the Premier League and his International debut surely can’t be far away.

NUFCBlog Author: Frankly Various Frankly Various has written 11 articles on this blog.

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