Premier League legend and former Newcastle United striker Alan Shearer on Wednesday said he hoped that England would make at least the final of the Euro Championships 2020 despite potential dilemma surrounding the uncertain availability of marquee strikers Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford.
Shearer was speaking on the sidelines of the Next Generation Mumbai Cup, a tie-up between the Indian Super League and Premier League to encourage kids to play football.
England are placed in Group D with Croatia, Czech Republic and a qualifier progressing from the playoffs towards the end of March and while Gareth Southgate’s men play all their group games in Wembley, Shearer feels that the chance of playing at the venue during the semi-finals and final could be an added motivation.
“I would hope England have a really good opportunity because they could even play the semi-final and final both at Wembley and haven't played at Wembley at Euro 96. In the minute, we don't have Harry Kane or Rashford fit in terms of centre forwards, so if we are going to be successful, we will need those two fit, especially Kane. But, if not England, then France,” the 49-year-old said during a media roundtable in Mumbai.
Shearer admitted that Southgate would face a selection headache if either of the duo or both of them don’t make it to the major tournament.
“You have got great opportunities whether the manager picks Jamie Vardy or not and asks him to come out of retirement. He is the joint top scorer in the Premier League at the minute with 17 goals along with Aubameyang; then you have Tammy Abraham who has had a very good season in the PL. I know he has not played the last couple of matches. Then you have Danny Ings, then you have Calvert-Lewin as well,” he said.
Abraham has been an influential player in Frank Lampard’s setup at Chelsea, with the striker playing as the team’s protagonist after Eden Hazard’s departure to Real Madrid. In the Championship last season, he impressed playing for Aston Villa scoring 25 goals en route to the team’s promotion to the Premier League. This season, he has netted 13 times and provided three assists.
Danny Ings, on the other hand, has been Southampton’s unlikely hero, helping the team bounce back in the league. He has netted 15 times in 27 league games this season.
Calvert Lewin, who has netted a dozen goals, has also found himself comfortable in a favourable Everton setup under new boss Carlo Ancelotti.
Liverpool greatest Premier League team? Not according to Shearer
Shearer, Premier League’s all-time goal-scorer and a league winner with Blackburn Rovers, believes that Liverpool are far from being the English top-flight’s greatest, albeit terming them a phenomenal side. Jurgen Klopp-coached Liverpool has been frequently compared to Arsenal’s invincibles following their unbeaten run in the English top-flight so far, and according to Shearer, Liverpool’s need far greater achievements to called the greatest in the history of Premier League.
“No. Because I think you would have to win several titles like Manchester United did, like Man City have, then you can say that they are the best Premier League team but at the minute, they are going to win it this season.
“It is only a matter of time, and they have played some phenomenal football. I don’t think we can tell they are the best team in the Premier League yet. If they go on to win two, three or four titles, then we can have that discussion,” he added.
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Updated Date: Feb 27, 2020 11:13:15 IST