Three weeks is a long time in politics but three weeks without a football match is simply endless.

Lucky then that we have had the Gareth Southgate England squad to fill in a few days.

On the day Newcastle United flew off to Spain for a four day break and Royal Antwerp friendly, it was confirmed that Jonjo Shelvey and Jamaal Lascelles hadn’t been included in the latest international squad.

News of which surely confirms that neither Newcastle player has even a remote chance of flying to Russia for the finals in June.

It is great to see any Newcastle player getting outside recognition but you do have to wonder at some of the over the top reaction from certain supporters at the news, are people really really that bothered?

It is understandable that as well as personal recognition for the individual player, fans like to have their club recognised as well, especially when Mike Ashley ensures the club’s name is dragged through the mud so often and attracts such regular negative coverage.

There are always conspiracy theorists in these kind of situations but bias towards ‘big’ clubs hardly holds true when the likes of Burnley, Swansea, West Brom, Bournemouth, Stoke, Everton, Southampton, Leicester and others are represented.

In actual fact there were 14 of the 20 Premier League clubs that had players selected by Southgate, in this latest 27 man squad.

Gary Cahill would normally be there from Chelsea (as well as Loftus-Cheek!) if not for a loss of form, whilst the England boss said he would have included Crystal Palace’s Ruben Loftus-Cheek if he had been fit.

That leaves four clubs and Watford only had one English player in their most recent starting 11 and that is Troy Deeney, who turns 30 in June and isn’t suddenly going to be called up now.

The defining thing about the clubs without a player who Gareth Southgate had any interest in, is that the others without an England call-up are the three promoted clubs.

It is difficult to have much belief in Gareth Southgate when his only other managerial experience is relegating Middlesbrough BUT just maybe you could accept that he wants to see players have at least one full season in the Premier League (though obviously Jonjo Shelvey has previously played for England and played most of his career in the top tier, so maybe a case of proving himself again) before he feels he can properly judge them.

Plus of course, in truth if Shelvey and/or Lascelles were involved with England at this stage, they wouldn’t exactly be centre of attention and getting a proper chance to be suddenly accelerated into the first eleven, instead having a lot of travelling and extra training to just be part of the group.

A major tournament often then brings in a clean broom afterwards to freshen things up and give others a chance from the start of the next qualifying campaign.

If the likes of Lascelles and/or Shelvey can be backed up with some other better quality players added (at St James Park) this summer, then playing well for a Newcastle side firmly in the top half of the Premier League would surely then make it all but impossible to ignore their claims.

Success for Newcastle United will also bring individual recognition, as Burnley’s players are now enjoying.



  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    I`ve yet to see a player in the England squad who has the passing range of Shelvey, he`s a good option to have in your squad,
    having watched every England game i have to say that under Southgate the midfield haven`t got a clue,
    it`s the back pass or square ball, they are scared schittless to hit a long pass & when you have Kane & Vardy up front Jonjo is exactly what you want.
    as for Lascelles i`d have him in the squad as well

    • Down Under Mag

      Southgate is showing he is just a puppet – content to keep his job and ensure so by playing the payers he is told to play that will cause fewer ripples through the media, no matter what the detriment is to the England cause. Shelvey may be a loose cannon at times, but he would be a fantastic option to have on teh bench if they are a goal behind and would unlock Kane in a way no other England midfielder can right now. Lascelles is better than some others who HAVE made the squad and i’m struggling to know what he has to do to get in the squad at the very least…no-one is sayign they should be first choice, but they as good if not better than some of the other squad players.

    • Steve

      Shelvey would be great at launching passes through defenses like Iceland. The rest are short passers of the ball, which requires the rest of the team to move forward. Not great when you’re playing a team that sits back waiting for the counter. Vardy thrives off that at Leicester, from Mahrez – why do the England managers not see this?

  • Rich Lawson

    Southgate is a hopeless manager,but good at spouting the nonsense the FA feed him for the press.He will not get past the group stages,assuming we even go to Russia now ? Being a nice bloke like Hodgson he will resign and start the whole merry go round off again. If we had anybody playing for England they would only get injured before the season or flogged at an inflated price for money that would go straight to Ashley.We are much better off out of it.

    • Down Under Mag

      I agree, it’s almost a blessing in disguise that no-one is in the squad. Not if we want to hold on to them anyway… If any of our players who are going have a decent competition then it’s bye bye and hello to another fat wad going into Ashleys pocket never to see the light of day.

    • Jezza

      Spot on. No good whatsoever can come from Newcastle players getting picked for the World Cup.

  • Rich Lawson

    Is that Jonjo in the middle of the picture above,having just heard the squad ?

  • Paul Patterson

    Couldn’t care less about London FC, but the biggest problem I have with the whole selection process is that it’s not on form.
    Shelvey/Lascelles could have the best 10 games of their careers for the rest of the season and there will still be no chance of them getting the call.
    It’s all a case of if the face fits and with our players, they don’t.

    • Jezza

      There has always been a huge Southern bias in the selection of players for England, which is one of the main reasons why I have never supported the national team. Chris Waddle and Paul Gasscoigne were two of the very best players in the country in their day but while they were at Newcastle they never got a look in for the national team but as soon as they each moved to Spurs they were immediately welcomed into the England set up.

      • thewildchimp

        It’s because they are taking money to promote players into commercial super-stars. Does anyone care about Jonjo Shelvey or Jamaal Lascelles? Is Ashley gonna pay the FA for these two to play?

        The only chance for them is to either transfer somewhere south or play level above all others.

        • Jezza

          That’s a new angle I’d never thought about before. One thing is for certain in my mind, over the past 40 or 50 years the media have played as big a role as successive England managers in deciding who plays for the national team.

      • Lhc

        I watched a documentary on gazza, in it he said that terry venables had said to him that if he signs for spurs he would get him into England’s next squad, 10 or so days after signing for them he was called up.

  • Megatron1505

    Not bothered if our players get called up or not really, but the principle that they are overlooked in favour of weaker, out of form, players does bother me.

    Livermore and Smalling or Shelvey and Lascelles?

    Plus Southgates utter 5hite about only calling up players who are playing regularly for their clubs and are in form.

  • Wor Lass

    I have no great belief in Southgate as a manager and have always seen him as an FA “Yes-man” but to say, “It is difficult to have much belief in Gareth Southgate when his only other managerial experience is relegating Middlesbrough …” is as over the top as the reactions youre highlighting, Jim. He did manage the Under 21s for three years and had an almost 82% winning record.

  • Dillon Tovak

    This article 🙄

  • Mxpx

    I think Lewis Dunk can feel aggrieved to have missed out too as well as our pair shelvey offers more of a passing range than any of the team we have picked that may help us break down a team that has parked the bus against us the article says Troy deeney is too old turned 30 I’d call up Glenn Murray based on his form I don’t care how old a player is if they can still go it doesn’t matter I remember one Ricky lambert scoring with his first international touch aged 31 it’s never too late although deeneys form is not great still I think it’s the worst England team I’ve ever seen but Argentina have done even worse than us with their latest squad they’ve left out mauro icardi who has 22 goals this season for inter Milan and Pablo dybala who I’d argue now Messi isn’t as fast as he used to be is actually their best player and has scored an impressive 21 himself at juventus not to mention that he plays with gonzalo higuain every week there which could only help the national team

    • Geordiegiants

      Better than Messi??? Howare!

  • Scottie Chugger Dearden

    Who honestly cares about England at international tournaments these days, the players made their feelings clear in 2006 whilst out partying with their WAGS after we’d been kicked out. I always remember English media kicking off when Shearer got the Captaincy and not the beloved Tony Adams! As long as Lascelles and Shelvey keep performing for Nufc I’ll be happy, eventually Southgate will come knocking!

  • GToon

    Who cares about the southern counties select 11. I hope they lose every game at the World Cup. They have never given our players any recognition over anybody who sits on the bench at Spurs or gets the odd game for Arsenal. This has been the case since I can remember. The only way one of our players will get any recognition is if they move to one of these clubs. Then suddenly, overnight, they will be in the squad. Magic.

  • Wor Lass

    The media in the UK has a London bias and players based there definitely have greater exposure but some of the comments on here are well OTT and come over like provincial moaners with a bag of McCains on each shoulder. Our players can be picked for England – Colback managed it FFS!

  • Richard Hawley

    Over the years I have seen lots of Newcastle United players work extremely hard at our club to make the England set up,only to have there heads turned by other players from other clubs once in the squad ,there performances were never the same for Newcastle.
    Peter Beardsley
    Chris waddle
    Paul Gascogne
    Immediately spring to mind.
    We need to keep the likes of Lascelles and Shelvey as far away for the England scene as possible.
    Over recent years the England caps have been completely devalued as there often handed to very average players at best.
    England are currently managed by the worst manger (Fat Sam doesn’t count) I have seen in 40 years of suffering international football.
    This word cup will end in another embarrassing disaster of which we don’t need any of our players associated with.

  • Geordiegiants

    I’m happy Jonjo has a reputation for being a bad lad and nobody else wants to take a chance on him. If we could keep Lascelles at least another season we might be able to consolidate in the prem. keep them as far away as possible from that shower we call a national side I say.