England Under-21 squad announcement delayed

Andy Carroll's participation at next month's European Under-21 Championship was shrouded in mystery today after Stuart Pearce delayed announcing his squad until next week.

Pearce has already informed at least two players of their fate, with Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger this morning confirming Jack Wilshere's selection and Scott Loach last night revealing he had not made the cut.

It is fair to assume the vast majority of the 40-man provisional party named by Pearce earlier this month have also been made aware of whether they have made the final 23, and full details of the squad were expected to be released this afternoon.

But the Football Association have revealed it will now be announced on Monday, the same day as the senior squad for the June 4 European Championship qualifier against Switzerland.

The FA claimed the decision to delay was made because it was felt better to wait until after Sunday's final round of Barclays Premier League games before going public.

But today's news will only serve to fuel speculation over the inclusion of Liverpool striker Carroll, following reports he had expressed concern about taking part in the finals in Denmark.

The 22-year-old, who has endured an injury-hit second half of the season, is said to have questioned whether tournament football could do him more harm than good ahead of the new campaign.

Like Wenger, Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish has suggested he is not in favour of players being drafted back into the under-21 fold after graduating to the senior set-up.

Wenger has also expressed concern about 19-year-old Wilshere suffering burnout as result of the number of games he has played for club and country this season.

Wenger said today: "I heard he has been picked. We just have to accept and respect the choice, even if we think it is the wrong decision.

"Jack Wilshere is in the red for a while now and this can be a risk for his health.

"He will respect the decision. He knows that he is nearly at the end of his energy level but he is keen to do well.

"He has played nearly 50 games this year. To go to a tournament for me is a massive risk.

"I am happy if the under-21s do well because I want England to do very well.

"I think it is not the right decision but will respect (it) and let him go."

Pearce has been adamant that including the best players at his disposal is crucial not only to England's chances this summer but also to boosting the country's hopes of success at future World Cups and European Championships.

One player who has confirmed he did not make the final 23 is Watford goalkeeper Loach.

His omission may spark speculation Fabio Capello is preparing to make him a permanent part of the senior set-up following Ben Foster's decision to make himself unavailable for selection.

Loach, who was twice promoted last year following a series of withdrawals, wrote on Twitter yesterday: "Didn't make final 23..so no more 21s for me.

"Just an honour to have gained 14 caps for my country. Time to relax n have a few weeks off now."

Both Wilshere and Carroll are expected to be named in the senior squad against Switzerland at Wembley, meaning they would miss the under-21s' pre-tournament training camp.

England's Under-21 Championship campaign begins on June 12 and they will play three games in eight days, and five in 15 days if they reach the final.

News
The cartoon depicts the UK (far left) walking around a Syrian child refugee
newsIn an exclusive artwork for The Independent, Ali Ferzat attacks Britain's lack of 'humanity'
Life and Style
Man taking selfie in front of car
health
Sport
footballManager attacks Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp after criticism of Diego Costa's apparent stamping
Life and Style
food + drink
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore