UEFA’s decision to increase the maximum squad size to 26 at this summer’s European Championships could hand a dramatic lifeline to some of the Premier League’s fringe stars.
Under the old 23-man squad limit, plenty of the top-flight’s biggest names were set to miss out on the rescheduled tournament, which is due to be played in several cities across the continent.
Suddenly, the doors to the departure lounge have swung open for a whole clutch of players as Gareth Southgate and other National team managers have an extra three spots to fill.
Daily Star Sport have picked out eight players who stand to benefit from the new limit, including stars at Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool.
Jesse Lingard, Manchester United
Lingard’s excellent form for West Ham has made him a potential option for Southgate this summer
Jesse Lingard’s odds of making Southgate’s Euro squad have tumbled in recent weeks thanks to his excellent form while on-loan at West Ham, but his inclusion is by no means a guarantee.
The 28-year-old featured in all three of England’s March internationals and now has an extra chance to secure what appeared to be an unlikely Euro dream just a few months ago.
Trent Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool
Alexander-Arnold was left out of Gareth Southgate’s most recent England squad
While Lingard’s inclusion seemed almost impossible six months ago, Trent Alexander-Arnold’s appeared almost guaranteed.
The Liverpool star has long been considered one of Europe’s best right-backs and was a regular in Southgate’s international squads.
That was until last month, when Alexander-Arnold was given the boot to the shock of many at Anfield and around the country.
Now that three more spaces have opened up, the 22-year-old should be able to sneak his way into the squad even if he doesn’t start.
Emile Smith-Rowe, Arsenal
Smith-Rowe has impressed for…