Gareth Southgate Cannot Keep Faith in Jordan Pickford

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Jordan Pickford
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 23: Everton's Jordan Pickford during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Everton FC at Emirates Stadium on February 23, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Rob Newell - CameraSport via Getty Images)

Jordan Pickford made another individual error for Everton in the 1-1 draw with Manchester United yesterday.

The England goalkeeper has 24 senior caps for his country, but struggled for form this season and kept just six clean sheets in 29 matches.

With Euro 2020 only three months away, Pickford faces a crucial period to hold on to the number one shirt for his country.

So far, Gareth Southgate, who was in attendance at Goodison Park yesterday, placed faith in the 25-year-old shot-stopper, but the former Sunderland player’s dip in form and the good form of other English keepers suggest that Southgate may drop Pickford as his number one this summer.

Jordan Pickford Could Be Dropped By Gareth Southgate

Individual Errors

Pickford’s error yesterday against Manchester United was the 25-year-old’s third of the season which led directly to a goal. Only Newcastle keeper Martin Dubravka has made more errors (four).

The former Sunderland stopper let a 24-yard shot from Bruno Fernandes under his body, which should have been saved easily.

However, Pickford’s errors were apparent last season too as he conceded four goals which came from his direct errors; the second-most in the Premier League during 2018/19

The shot-stopper faced criticism from pundits and fans after yesterday’s performance. Some labelled Pickford a liability, while former United skipper Roy Keane questioned the keeper’s ability at full-time. With Southgate watching from the stands, it was an ill-timed mistake from the 25-year-old keeper.

Three More Deserving Goalkeepers

The upcoming England friendlies against Italy and Denmark later this month may give some indication about who Southgate’s first-choice keeper will be at the Euros.

If the England boss persists with Jordan Pickford, there will be three English goalkeepers who will feel aggrieved by the situation.

Burnley’s Nick Pope kept 11 clean sheets in 28 Premier League appearances this season, the most in the league. Pope also made more saves than any other English keeper with 88.

Dean Henderson and Watford’s Ben Foster kept nine each in 26 and 28 appearances respectively. Both also made just one error leading to goals earlier in the season. Twenty-two-year-old Henderson let Georginio Wijnaldum’s shot underneath him in September during Sheffield United’s loss to Liverpool but has looked confident ever since, while Foster could provide some valuable experience amongst a group of younger keepers at the Euros.

Southgate has a history of loyalty to players, but with a number of strong contenders performing consistently in the Premier League, it would be unfair to stick with Jordan Pickford unless his form improves dramatically.

 

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