Swansea star pushing for England start after international recall


A recall for Swansea’s Jonjo Shelvey was the headline news from Roy Hodgson’s latest England squad, for Euro 2016 qualifiers against San Marino and Switzerland.

The midfielder will now look to secure himself a starting role in the two games, with regulars Fabian Delph, Jack Wilshere and Jordan Henderson either struggling or absent through injury.

Although Delph is included in the 22-man squad, he has only just returned to fitness following a hamstring strain picked up in pre-season with new club Manchester City.

Arsene Wenger said some weeks ago that Wilshere will not be back in contention for Arsenal until after the international break while Henderson is still out, so there is a real chance for a midfielder not usually considered a starting player to cement a role in their place.

Shelvey, who is included an England party for the first time since 2012, is perhaps in the best early-season form to capitalise on the trio’s niggles, having enjoyed the opening four games for Swansea.

Everton’s Ross Barkley, Liverpool’s James Milner, who is playing in central midfield now he’s moved to Liverpool and Manchester United’s Michael Carrick are likely to be the men standing in Shelvey’s way, while Ryan Mason continues his own rehabilitation from injury.

Elsewhere, Jamie Vardy earned another international call up thanks to Leicester’s impressive start to the season, while John Stones was also included in the squad despite the ongoing mystery surrounding his future at club level.

The first of the two Euro 2016 qualifiers sees Hodgson’s men take on San Marino in their own backyard, with Ladbrokes making them 1/100 certainties for victory.

After that expected win, the Three Lions will face Switzerland looking to maintain their 100 percent record in Group E.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.