England snub is huge blow for Burnley defender as Brighton man receives shock call-up!
James Tarkowski has suffered yet another snub from Gareth Southgate after the England boss named his provisional squad for Euro 2020.
The Burnley defender's omission from the group will, once again, be a bitter pill to swallow, with Ben White's shock inclusion adding to his frustrations.
The Brighton defender, who had a spell on loan with Leeds United last season, was called up amid doubts over Kalvin Phillips’ fitness.
The 23-year-old, who has not represented his national side at any level previously, was watched by Southgate in the Seagulls' 1-1 home draw against West Ham earlier this month.
White can play all across the back four, including in a three-man defence, and has also filled in as a defensive midfielder, deputising at times for Phillips when he was on loan at Leeds United in the 2019/20 season.
The 23-year-old’s performances for Leeds that season, where he helped Marcelo Bielsa’s side gain promotion to the Premier League, starting all 46 league matches and putting him firmly in the spotlight.
Leeds had hoped to sign him permanently, but Graham Potter was keen to bring him back to the Amex and make him a figurehead of his Brighton side, where he has started 36 of Albion’s 38 league matches.
But it's another huge blow for Tarkowski who, statistically, was once again one of the standout performers in the Premier League.
The ex-Brentford centre back, whose two England caps came in 2018, was inducted into the WhoScored Team of the Year following another impressive term.
The 28-year-old, handed a rating of 7.02, partnered Manchester United's Harry Maguire at the back having finished second in the top flight for blocks made (47), according to the Premier League's statisticians, while leading the way in terms of both clearances (200) and headed clearances (111).
After being overlooked last year, when the Three Lions were involved in the UEFA Nations League, Tarkowski had started to question whether a move away from Turf Moor would help increase his international credentials.
"I want to play at the best level I can, club football and internationally," he said. "I want to test myself against the best. We will see what happens.
"I just want to play at the top level and if that opportunity came I don’t think it is something I could turn down.
“Champions League and playing for your country, playing in big tournaments, is playing at the top level, so that’s what I would want to do if the opportunities came.”
And there's no doubt that Tarkowski comes out on top when crunching the data between the pair.
White has conceded fewer goals this season (44) and made more interceptions (62), but those are the only variables where he is out in front.
Tarkowski has made 20 more blocks, 17 more tackles, 13 more successful challenges, 109 more clearances, 69 more headed clearances and has won 116 more aerial duels.
Southgate is set to name his provisional Euro 2020 squad at 1pm, naming a larger than needed party, before trimming it down to 26 on June 1st.
Provisional squad - Goalkeepers: Dean Henderson, Sam Johnstone, Jordan Pickford, Aaron Ramsdale.
Defenders: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ben Chilwell, Conor Coady, Ben Godfrey, Reece James, Harry Maguire, Tyrone Mings, Luke Shaw, John Stones, Kieran Trippier, Kyle Walker, Ben White.
Midfielders: Jude Bellingham, Jordan Henderson, Jesse Lingard, Mason Mount, Kalvin Phillips, Declan Rice, James Ward-Prowse.
Forwards: Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Phil Foden, Jack Grealish, Mason Greenwood, Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka, Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling, Ollie Watkins.