Newcastle United

Newcastle United: Southgate ‘has got to start’ Trippier at right-back claims Craig Hope


Journalist Craig Hope has made a ‘direct plea’ to England manager Gareth Southgate. The Daily Mail reporter has urged the Three Lions boss to start Newcastle United’s Kieran Trippier at right-back.

Hope spoke on ‘True Faith: Newcastle United podcast’, about why he thinks Trippier should start for England in the right-back position.

The 32-year-old has had a fantastic season with the Magpies. He’s been top-class, week in and week out. His rating on Sofascore is currently at 7.73, the best of any Newcastle player this season.

In addition, he’s got three assists and seven clean sheets since the 2022/23 season began. So, it’s come as no surprise that Southgate called him up to England’s World Cup squad.

Hope believes you won’t get the best out of Trippier if he’s played as a left-back.

He said: “If I could make a direct plea to Gareth Southgate, it would be do not play Kieran Trippier at left-back.

“I know there’s a problem on the left flank, there’s only Luke Shaw and if Luke Shaw is injured you probably have to shoehorn Bukayo Saka in there.”

“You lose so much if you play Kieran Trippier on the left. He’s a guy that does a job. He does the job very competently.”

“When you play him on the right he’s superhuman, he’s incredible. It doesn’t really work in defence, if you play a right-footed, right winger on the left it arguably improves them because they can cut in field, the field opens up, they can have a shot at goal.”

“A full-back needs to be on the natural side, that’s where the space is.”

“How many times have we seen Kieran Trippier absolutely exploit that space and manipulate the flank.”

“So I think Kieran Trippier has got to start as right-back because you gain so much from that.”

TIF’s view on Hope’s comments…

We believe that Hope is absolutely spot on here. Trippier has been immense this season, mostly playing as a right-back for Newcastle.

Manchester City’s Kyle Walker and Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold are also at Southgate’s disposal. However, Trippier has been much better than both Walker and Alexander-Arnold this season, in almost every aspect of his game (via Fbref).

Furthermore, Trippier is a threat on set pieces. All of his goals for the Magpies have come directly from free-kicks, so if England have a free-kick there’s only one man who should be taking them.

England start their World Cup campaign against Iran on Monday. With his immense form this season, we think Trippier simply has to start for the Three Lions.

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