Newcastle midfielder backed for unlikely recall to England squad

Graeme Souness has tipped Newcastle United midfielder Jonjo Shelvey to earn a recall to the England squad.

The 25-year-old has been capped six times by his country, although he hasn’t figured for the national team since 2015.

Shelvey produced an impressive performance for Newcastle against Liverpool over the weekend and Souness believes he could force his way into Gareth Southgate’s plans for the World Cup.

“I’m going to say something daft, but if he got his act together there would be a shout for him to get back into the England squad,” he told Sky Sports.

“There are lots of midfielders who are about possession, but he wants to hurt you all the time.

“A modern midfield player gets away with murder these days because they are allowed to go sideways and the stats say they have kept the ball all day. He has an edge to him, which I love in a player. Sometimes he has more than an edge and he has to get that out of his game. At 25 he must have learned his lesson.

“There’s so much to like about him and he’s got so much to offer – he will stand up to someone, he has a pass, he has technique – but he has the exploding head he must control.”

Souness started his comments with ‘I’m going to say something daft’ and he should have stopped there. Shelvey is a decent enough player, but is he really good enough to play international football?

The former Newcastle boss went onto to say that ‘at 25 he must have learned his lesson’ but judging by his stamp on Tottenham’s Dele Alli less than two months ago it’s fair to say he’s still an accident waiting to happen.

England will have a hard enough time making an impact at the World Cup without adding to their problems by taking Shelvey along for the ride.

‘I’m going to say something daft’ – yes Graeme, you did.

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