England have made an abrupt change to the squad that interim manager Gareth Southgate selected on Sunday night.
The inclusion of Stoke City defender Glen Johnson surprised many, considering the 54-cap international hasn’t represented the Three Lions since the 2014 World Cup and the Potters have been disastrous at the back this season – conceding a staggering 16 times.
However, the controversial decision has now been taken out of Southgate’s hands, with Johnson withdrawing from the squad to face Malta and Slovenia due to injury.
— Sky Sports News HQ (@SkySportsNewsHQ) October 4, 2016
And England have already announced the veteran full-back’s replacement, issuing Burnley defender Michael Keane his first call-up at senior level after representing the U21s on 16 occasions.
There's a change to the #ThreeLions squad:
— England (@England) October 4, 2016
The 23-year-old has been in good form this season, scoring once and helping Burnley claim two clean sheets in seven Premier League outings.
Needless to say, some on Twitter (including Phil Neville) are pretty chuffed for the Burnley defender:
Well done Michael Keane well deserved call up!
— Philip Neville (@fizzer18) October 4, 2016
— Michael Foster (@mghfoster) October 4, 2016
Something I am a fan of:
Michael Keane getting an England call up.
Time for players to be judged on performance, not club. #twitterclarets
— Ryan Dilks (@dilksymatey) October 4, 2016
— Bacchus (@Bacchus_Baracus) October 4, 2016
Great to see Michael Keane called up to the England squad, shows the virtue in moving on from the "big" clubs when chances aren't offered.
— Jack Lusby (@jacklusby_) October 4, 2016
Meanwhile, there’s not too much sympathy for Johnson’s ‘injury’ – which many are rather sceptical about:
Glen Johnson is out of the England squad through injury (shock) and now Michael Keane gets first England call up. More on @MirrorFootball
— John Cross (@johncrossmirror) October 4, 2016
Glen Johnson already out of the #ENG squad. Poor fella having his walking stick snatched away like that. Respect your elders, kids.
— Dream Team (@dreamteamfc) October 4, 2016
Glen Johnson withdrawn through embarrassment?
— Peter Jeffery (@PeterJeffery7) October 4, 2016
Glen Johnson's return to the England squad… pic.twitter.com/VGrbjFUZMT
— Metro Sport (@Metro_Sport) October 4, 2016
#LFC Sad to hear Glen Johnson's forced withdrawal from England team. Apparently his lack of talent has flared up.
— AJ (@iamnotshouting) October 4, 2016
BREAKING: Glen Johnson withdraws from the England squad. pic.twitter.com/yjiJgyFbWY
— Coral (@Coral) October 4, 2016