England manager Roy Hodgson has made six changes to his England side to face Slovakia in the crucial Gameday Three of group play at the Euro 2016 tournament. However, the only two outfield players who made the trip to France and yet to be used are both from Everton - Ross Barkley and John Stones.
Daniel Sturridge, Jamie Vardy, Jordan Henderson, Jack Wilshere, Nathaniel Clyne and Ryan Bertrand are all in the Three Lions starting XI tonight but both Barkley and Stones are getting the snub from Hodgson.
#SVKENG pic.twitter.com/kLVS2KHxOM— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) June 20, 2016
England lead Group B with four points from two games, one ahead of Wales and Slovakia, with Russia in fourth with just one point. While qualification for the knockout rounds is virtually assured, a win would ensure the English will not have to take on any of the other group winners in their next game.
Both Barkley and Stones have been a subject of some of the first few conversations Everton manager Ronald Koeman has had with the press.
Regarding the midfielder, Koeman said -
“He’s already a key player for Everton, even at a young age. I look forward to working with him and making him a better player.
“I like him as a player because he is good with his left foot, right foot and has a good view of the pitch. But he needs to improve, he is not just a talent any more he is a national team player and expectations are strong.
“We will give him every support. It is about building a good relationship with the players, showing them what they have to do to improve. It starts in the morning and finishes in the evening.”
He also mentioned Stones as a player he would like to keep at the Blues and work with -
“I like to help everybody and of course you sometimes have something more because he played in the same position as me.
“There will be good support for the boy but first I want to speak to him personally, get his feelings and that will be what we do.
“It’s not so difficult. I had that experience in my last two years always a lot of interest in the players.
“First of all we like to keep these types of players. You don’t sell you best players but I’ll have meetings and we’ll see what happens.”