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Nov 14, 2019 at 7.45pm UK
England
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Gareth Southgate insists England will not be affected by Sterling-Gomez fallout

:Headline: Gareth Southgate insists England will not be affected by Sterling-Gomez fallout:
Manager Gareth Southgate says he is satisfied with how the matter has been handled.
PA | 23d

England manager Gareth Southgate insists his side have not struggled to focus on their match against Montenegro amid the fall-out from the clash between Raheem Sterling and Joe Gomez.

The Manchester City forward has been sidelined from Thursday night's match at Wembley, England's 1,000th fixture, as a disciplinary measure following an altercation with Gomez.

"I think that we have dealt with everything. The reason we have tried to do that as quickly as possible is so we can focus fully on the match," said Southgate ahead of the Euro 2020 qualifier.

"Everybody has trained really well. The whole group are together now. We are looking forward to getting on with it."

Joe Gomez (left) and Raheem Sterling trained along with their England team-mates at St George's Park earlier on Wednesday (Mike Egerton/PA).

Southgate also responded to criticism that he has overreacted by dropping Sterling.

He added: "Everybody, when you are a leader or manager, will have an opinion on the decisions that you take. Only those who have been in this position really know all the details involved.

"Everybody will view it differently. You have to do what you believe to be the right thing. If you only try to take decisions that you think will keep people happy, that's not a route to take either.

"I have to do first and foremost what is right for the country, what's right for the team, all the while trying to look after the players."

Discussing how England might cope without Sterling, Southgate said: "Of course he is in outstanding form and he is an outstanding player, but we have a very good team out there tomorrow.

"We always select a team that we believe can win the match and one that is full of energy, full of speed and full of technical ability."

The England boss remains confident that Gomez is in the right frame of mind following the incident.

"Everybody in the squad is ready," he stressed. "That's hardly ever any different. Everybody is ready for the game."

England need just one more point to qualify for Euro 2020 ahead of Thursday's clash with Montenegro and will also be through if Kosovo lose to Czech Republic on the same day.

“Joe and Raheem are talking now, so it's good for the team to move on”
- Harry Maguire

"I think as players we have a job and we have got a big game tomorrow night," said Manchester United defender Harry Maguire.

"We are trying to qualify for the Euros, we are solely focused on that now. We have moved on from it. It is really important that we put on a performance tomorrow night and get the qualification which we have all wanted.

"It is not ultimately our decision on the punishment of Raheem.

"I think Gareth has said that it is his decision. As players we have moved on, Joe and Raheem are talking now, so it's good for the team to move on and it's really important to get the three points tomorrow.

"Everybody mixes, I think you have seen how good the unity in the squad has been over the last couple of years. The squad has grown together and we will keep on growing. There are definitely no cliques."

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3Manchester CityMan City15102343172632
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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool16142037142344
2Leicester CityLeicester1511223592635
3Manchester CityMan City15102343172632
4Chelsea169253124729
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs166552723423
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves155822117423
7Crystal Palace166461418-422
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd155642318521
9Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd154741715219
10Arsenal154742123-219
11Newcastle UnitedNewcastle155461522-719
12Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton155371822-418
13Burnley165382126-518
14Bournemouth164571821-317
15Everton165291928-917
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham154471725-816
17Aston Villa154382224-215
18Southampton154381733-1615
19Norwich CityNorwich1532101632-1611
20Watford16169930-219
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