Phillips out of England squad in concern ahead of World Cup
England midfielder Kalvin Phillips withdrew from the national team squad on Tuesday because of a shoulder injury in a concern for coach Gareth Southgate ahead of the World Cup.
Phillips was replaced by central midfielder Jordan Henderson, with England playing Nations League games against Italy and Germany over the next week.
Phillips, who was a regular in England’s team in its run to the European Championship final last year, sustained a dislocated shoulder in training last week and might need an operation, potentially putting at risk his place in England’s World Cup squad.
The 26-year-old holding midfielder has endured a frustrating time since leaving Leeds to join Manchester City during the offseason, with injuries — particularly problems with his shoulder — restricting him to just only substitute appearances totaling 14 minutes. The most recent appearance was a cameo against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League last week.
That offered hope that Phillips was nearing fitness after hurting his shoulder during City’s friendly against Barcelona in August. He sustained two significant shoulder injuries during his time at Leeds.
Southgate has linked Phillips with Declan Rice as his first-choice central midfield pairing since Euro 2020, which ended with England losing to Italy in a penalty shootout in the final.
It provides Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham and Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse with a chance to stake a claim for a starting spot alongside Rice in England’s team for the World Cup.
The World Cup begins Nov. 20.
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By STEVE DOUGLAS
AP Sports Writer