Marcus Rashford ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo Harry Kane at same age - Southgate


After an exciting summer of World Cup action and a creditable narrow defeat to Spain in their opening UEFA Nations League game over the weekend, "dull worldwide friendly" service resumed for Gareth Southgate's England as they took on Switzerland at the King Power Stadium.

"He's got huge competition for places at his club so you can understand that [frustration]", Southgate said.

Taking the opportunity to rotate his squad and rest a number of their World Cup stars, Southgate gave caps to a number of fringe players including Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ruben Loftus-Cheek & James Tarkowski. "He's had three days of little training, so half-an-hour was flawless to keep him ticking over".

"I am concerned about Harry Kane". Southgate also expressed concerns about the fact Jack Butland now plays in the Championship with Stoke and even Marcus Rashford, England's scorer in their past two games, is not a regular for Manchester United, with only one Premier League start this season.

Rashford will not play in United's next three domestic matches after being sent off in a 2-0 win at Burnley earlier this month.

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Southgate's preferred attack is Sterling in tandem with Kane but Rashford's precocity for England, including three goals in his past four global starts, demands his inclusion. Leicester City's Ben Chilwell and Demarai Gray have been promoted from the under 21s for Tuesday night's friendly with Switzerland and the pair have limited Premier League experience, though Southgate is truly down to the bare bones - so much so that there is no replacement for the newly-injured Dele Alli. "I don't think Liverpool will lose the game".

Speaking after the game, Southgate said: 'I think he's going to get matches at his club.

"He's got two goals this week, some of his performances with us have been really good but to finish with two really good finishes is very important for him". We needed to keep him ticking over.

Rashford subsequently went to Euro 2016 as England's boy wonder but only played a cameo role in that tournament and was then largely a substitute at this summer's World Cup. "For me, I was delighted because we really wanted to make him feel important over this period anyway".