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England news: Wenger singles out Walker as weak link

1 year ago

In the latest England news, former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes playing Kyle Walker at centre-back will harm the Three Lions’ chances of winning the 2018 World Cup.

Walker has predominantly been a right-back during his career and he has impressed in this position for both Tottenham Hotspur and current employers Manchester City.

The 28-year-old is arguably one of England’s best options on the right side of a back four but Gareth Southgate has opted to use Spurs ace Kieran Trippier in the role.

Instead, Walker, who admitted before the World Cup he would prefer to play right-back, has been shifted in-field to form part of a three-man defence alongside John Stones and Harry Maguire.

The Sheffield-born star gave away a penalty in the opening 2-1 victory over Tunisia and Wenger, who is still contemplating what to do following his exit from the Gunners, believes the defender could cost England in Russia.

“The point is that he is not a real defender, and especially not a central defender,” Wenger told beIN SPORTS. “He can be subject to defensive mistakes, which he would not pay for when he plays on the right.

“That’s why the sacrificed player, who nobody talks about, who had played all the games before, is [Tottenham’s Eric] Dier, because he can play in the middle as a centre-back and he can play in midfield as well. And until now, I don’t know why, he has not been used at all.”

England take on Belgium on Thursday in their final Group G game and a draw for the Three Lions would see them clinch top spot as long as their disciplinary record remains better than the Red Devils’.

Southgate’s men are 17/10 favourites with betway sports to pick up all three points, a draw is priced at 21/10 whilst Roberto Martinez’s side are 19/10 to claim the spoils.