Jamie Carragher suggests real reason why Arsenal ace Ben White snubbed England

Jamie Carragher has been speaking about Ben White’s decision not to play for England

Jamie Carragher

Jamie Carragher believes the true reason Ben White ruled himself out of England selection was down to his status in Gareth Southgate’s pecking order, rather than his fallout with assistant Steve Holland. Southgate revealed prior to England’s friendlies against Brazil and Belgium that the Arsenal defender had rejected a call-up. This comes after he left the 2022 World Cup mid-tournament having been benched for the first two group games against Iran and the USA.

Reports in recent weeks say this was at least in part fuelled by an argument with Holland, who reputedly referenced an interview in which he said he did not like watching football. Former England defender Gary Neville believes White would get minutes under current circumstances, although former international teammate Carragher thinks otherwise.

Jamie Carragher believes the true reason Ben White ruled himself out of England selection was down to his status in Gareth Southgate’s pecking order, rather than his fallout with assistant Steve Holland. Southgate revealed prior to England’s friendlies against Brazil and Belgium that the Arsenal defender had rejected a call-up. This comes after he left the 2022 World Cup mid-tournament having been benched for the first two group games against Iran and the USA.

Reports in recent weeks say this was at least in part fuelled by an argument with Holland, who reputedly referenced an interview in which he said he did not like watching football. Former England defender Gary Neville believes White would get minutes under current circumstances, although former international teammate Carragher thinks otherwise.

“I think he’s done a great job for Arsenal, but he’s not better than Trent [Alexander-Arnold], Reece James, Kyle Walker, or [Kieran] Trippier. He’s not.

“I was in that position and you do feel like there’s other people better than you and you’re not going to get that opportunity. I don’t think it should be made into a huge story because he’s not going to play anyway.”

Neville reacted: “He will now, though, Carra. He’d play him centre-back, even, he would. You watched those centre-backs for England last night [vs Belgium], Ben White’s playing.”

Carragher retorted: “He doesn’t even play centre-back for his club! It’s easy to say that now after the games but he doesn’t play centre-back for his club and John Stones is the ‘Ben White’ if you like.

“You’re not going to play Ben White and John Stones together as centre-backs. I think Ben White’s probably thinking, ’I can relax, I can get ready for Arsenal, I can enjoy my international breaks’. Good luck to him.”

Expanding more on why he believes Tripper would get ahead of White, Carragher added: “Trippier’s had a bad sort of three or four months but for the last two or three years he’s been a brilliant player for England.

“He’s been fantastic. England managers, at times and I think we forget this as fans, pick players on their England performances.

“Sometimes we’ll say, ‘He’s not playing well for his club, he should be ahead of him’ but a manager has got to say, ‘He’s done well for me, he’s put that England shirt on in a big game with the added pressure’.”

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