Michael Bridge reckons Conor Gallagher was unfortunate to miss out on the latest England squad – but believes his omission might be down to the fact he's out on loan.
Gallagher, on loan at Crystal Palace from Chelsea, is enjoying an impressive season at Selhurst Park, but Bridge thinks that calling him into the Three Lions squad wouldn't be a good look for the Blues.
How do Gallagher's stats compare to those in the squad?
Compared to the four other central midfielders, the 21-year-old has arguably been outperforming them all this season.
Goal contributions wise, Gallagher has managed six in the league, which is more than Jude Bellingham (5), Jordan Henderson (3) and Kalvin Phillips (1), whilst he's level with Emile Smith Rowe, who was essentially picked ahead of him following Marcus Rashford's withdrawal.
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Gallagher has already shown himself of performing on the big stage, producing a huge display in the recent victory at Manchester City when he assisted Wilfried Zaha's opener before sealing the 2-0 win late on.
But Bridge doesn't think that Gallagher missing out was purely a decision based on his ability having previously tipped the youngster for a big future at Chelsea.
What did Bridge say?
When asked whether Gallagher was unfortunate to miss out on the squad for the games against Albania and San Marino, he told GIVEMESPORT: "I think so.
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"But I think Southgate is the kind of guy and I would probably join him on this, it could be dangerous to pick players, I know he's done it, but a player on loan at another club, does it give the right message that he's not deemed good enough to be at his parent club not good enough to play for his country, I don't know if Southgate thinks like that."
When could Gallagher get his first call-up?
If Bridge's theory is correct and Southgate isn't prepared to pick Gallagher until he's back at Chelsea, then his earliest call-up won't be until September.
Were that to be the case, it would leave Gallagher little time to impress in the squad before the 2022 World Cup, but if Southgate is willing to pick the 21-year-old then he'll surely have every chance of getting the nod for the next international break in March, providing his form continues.News Now - Sport News