Manchester City star, Raheem Sterling has been reportedly dropped from England’s European Championship qualifier against Montenegro following Sportsmail’s revelations of an angry bust-up with Joe Gomez.
It was gathered that Sterling attempted to grab Gomez by the neck following his arrival in the players’ canteen at St George’s Park on Monday, the day after they clashed during Liverpool‘s 3-1 win over Manchester City.
Sportsmail revealed details of the heated exchange on Monday evening, with the FA confirming that Sterling would not be considered for selection against Montenegro on Thursday as a result. The 24-year-old will stay with the squad however and could play against Kosovo on Sunday.
National Sportslink learned that Raheem Sterling has admitted “emotions got the better of me” after he was involved in an altercation with teammate Joe Gomez that has cost him a place in the England team.
The two players were involved in a heated exchange towards the end of Manchester City’s defeat to Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday and it is understood the pair then had to be separated after clashing again in the players’ canteen at England’s training base of St George’s Park on Monday.
According to FA statement: ‘The FA can confirm Raheem Sterling will not be considered for Thursday’s EURO 2020 qualifier against Montenegro as a result of a disturbance in a private team area at St. George’s Park today. He will remain with the squad.’
National Sportslink had earlier reported that the Manchester City and Liverpool players clashed during the Premier League game between the teams on Sunday, with a textbook bit of handbags as City were beaten 3-1 by the home side. The players squared-up to each other after a challenge before being separated by Gomez’s Liverpool team-mate James Milner.
The Telegraph reports that Sterling instigated the hostilities on arrival on England duty, attempting to provoke a physical reaction from Gomez, which the Liverpool defender avoided, remaining calm. Sterling realized the error of his ways and later apologized, but that has not saved him from being axed from the team for Thursday.
England takes on Montenegro on Thursday night before traveling to play Kosovo on Sunday as they look to wrap up top spot in Group A of Euro 2020 qualifying. The spat between the Three Lions team-mates will not have done anything to help Gareth Southgate’s preparation for the contests and will be looking to put the disagreement behind the players as quickly as possible.
Southgate commented on the situation: ‘We have taken the decision to not consider Raheem for the match against Montenegro on Thursday. ‘One of the great challenges and strengths for us is that we’ve been able to separate club rivalries from the national team.
Unfortunately, the emotions of yesterday’s game were still raw. ‘My feeling is that the right thing for the team is the action we have taken. Now that the decision has been made with the agreement of the entire squad, it’s important that we support the players and focus on Thursday night.’