Sam Allardyce has named uncapped West Ham midfielder Michail Antonio in his first England squad, but there is no place for Everton’s Ross Barkley.
His call-up is the biggest surprise in the England manager’s selection, though he has taken well to life in the Premier League since joining the Hammers from Nottingham Forest a year ago.
@Michailantonio yes!!!!!! Call up well deserved!! Good times ðµâªï¸ðµâªï¸â½ï¸ pic.twitter.com/34YywzyCWP
— Ben Spurgeon (@benspurgeon14) August 28, 2016
The big surprise in Allardyce's first #eng squad is Michail Antonio. Wayne Rooney named amongst midfielders. No Ross Barkley.
— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) August 28, 2016
Love big SAMs surprise call up for michail Antonio well deserved
— John Duncan Clements (@gooner1jdc) August 28, 2016
YES BIG SAM! Great call throwing Michail Antonio into the mix, about time too!
— Teags (@Teagle_7) August 28, 2016
What a year for @Michailantonio. Wasn't even first team this time last year but is now a key player and has an England call up ðâ
— Lewis West (@LewisW22) August 28, 2016
Here’s the man himself sharing the news with delight:
Delighted to get my first @England call up! ðð¿â½ #ThreeLions pic.twitter.com/qEVIHOCOBe
— Michail Antonio (@Michailantonio) August 28, 2016
Allardyce named 23 players for the World Cup 2018 qualifier in Slovakia. Ross Barkley, who was an unused squad member at Euro 2016, has been dropped despite scoring twice in his first four matches this season.
In all there are five changes from the squad that failed in France this summer, with Luke Shaw, Phil Jagielka, Danny Drinkwater and Theo Walcott all returning.
The retired James Milner drops out along with Marcus Rashford, who has been named in the Under-21s, and injured pair Jack Wilshere and Ryan Bertrand.
Here’s the England squad in full:
Goalkeepers: Fraser Forster, Joe Hart, Tom Heaton
Defenders: Gary Cahill, Nathaniel Clyne, Phil Jagielka, Danny Rose, Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling, John Stones, Kyle Walker
Midfielders: Dele Alli, Michail Antonio, Eric Dier, Danny Drinkwater, Jordan Henderson, Adam Lallana, Wayne Rooney, Raheem Sterling, Theo Walcott
Strikers: Harry Kane, Daniel Sturridge, Jamie Vardy