Harry Winks’ role within the England squad has been the focus of much debate during this international break. Winks, who returned to action for England in Tuesday’s 6-0 thrashing of Bulgaria, had not featured for the national side since a 3-0 victory over the USA back in November 2018.
Since that time, Winks had found his place filled by West Ham’s defensive-minded midfielder Declan Rice. However, following England’s 2-1 defeat against Czech Republic last week, Rice came under heavy criticism for his re-emerging mistakes in midfield and Southgate replaced him with Winks ahead of the Bulgaria clash.
Winks put in an excellent display against Bulgaria, completing 126 passes with a 94% pass completion rate (Who Scored).
Following the 6-0 win, Winks, who is known by Spurs fans for his burning passion, and positivity on the ball, has now received strong praise from former England manager Steve McClaren.
Speaking to Match Centre on Sky Sports News (15/10/2019 at 10:40 am), McClaren said, “He was busy. He was aggressive and he got the ball linked. Winks coming in gave England more balance in midfield and more mobility.
“And that key thing in that position, I always remember Sir Alex telling me, a key thing about a midfield player is that his first look has always got to be forward. Always got to be forward! And on Friday [against the Czech Republic], Rice got the ball, Henderson got the ball and the ball was square and back. It killed England.
“What Winks did and brought to the party was positive attacking. He was always looking to play that ball forward. I thought he was impressive in terms of that.”
Spurs Web Opinion
Although Winks was absent from the England side during their UEFA Nations League campaign over the summer, his performance against Bulgaria, along with the promise he continues to show for Spurs, should see him solidify a spot in Southgate’s England eleven ahead of Euro 2020.
Winks’ positivity has always been his best attribute. It’s great to see that it is now being recognised by those outside of Spurs and hopefully Winks can get the run in the England squad that he deserves.
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