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Chelsea midfielders Barkley, Loftus-Cheek called up as England begin Euro 2020 campaign

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Looking to build on semifinal appearance at the 2018 World Cup

Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Ross Barkley and Ruben Loftus-Cheek may be competing for minutes at Chelsea these days, but they’ve both managed to impress enough to get the call from England manager Gareth Southgate for the first games of the 2019 FIFA calendar. Not too many surprises otherwise from the selection, with Declan Rice joining for the first time after switching allegiance from the Republic of Ireland and veteran goalkeeper Tom Heaton getting another shot as Jordan Pickford has yet to truly recover from getting Origi’d.

England will begin their Euro 2020 qualification campaign with a home game against the Czech Republic, then take on Montenegro in what should be an easy and straightforward path to the final tournament — England’s qualification Group A also contains Bulgaria and Kosovo.

Both England and Kosovo are already assured of at least a spot in the play-offs anyway thanks to their performances in the UEFA Nations League last year. England won their group in League A to also qualify for this summer’s Nations League Finals, while Kosovo won their group in League D to earn promotion to League C in the next edition.

In any case, plenty of opportunities for caps, some of which will be thrown Ruben’s and Ross’s way as well, hopefully.

The full England squad for the March international break is as follows:

GOALKEEPERS: Jack Butland (Stoke City), Tom Heaton (Burnley), Jordan Pickford (Everton),

DEFENDERS: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Ben Chilwell (Leicester City), Michael Keane (Everton), Harry Maguire (Leicester City), Danny Rose(Tottenham Hotspur), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), John Stones (Manchester City), James Tarkowski (Burnley), Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur), Kyle Walker (Manchester City)

MIDFIELDERS: Ross Barkley (Chelsea), Dele (Tottenham Hotspur), Fabian Delph (Manchester City), Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea), Declan Rice (West Ham United),

ATTACKERS: Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Callum Wilson (AFC Bournemouth)