James Ward-Prowse, West Ham Midfielder, Expresses ‘Great Disappointment’ Over Exclusion from Gareth Southgate’s England Squad
West Ham midfielder James Ward-Prowse’s absence from Gareth Southgate’s recent England squad announcement was unexpected. Nevertheless, the 28-year-old managed to set aside this disappointment and delivered an outstanding performance in his team’s 2-1 triumph over Freiburg in the UEFA Europa League later that day. Following the victory, Ward-Prowse expressed his belief that his current form warrants a call-up to the England national team.
James Ward-Prowse has expressed “huge disappointment” after he was left out of Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad.
Ward-Prowse was a surprise omission from the Three Lions squad, with Southgate instead opting for Jordan Henderson and Kalvin Phillips for the friendly against Australia and UEFA Nations League match against Italy.
Ward-Prowse, 28, has 11 caps for his country but has not featured on the international stage since June 2022.
Despite the setback, Ward-Prowse played an important role as West Ham earned a 2-1 win over SC Freiburg in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday, setting up the winner for Nayef Aguerd.
But in his post-match interview, Ward-Prowse spoke openly about his England omission.
He told TNT Sports: “Yeah, huge disappointment. Like I said many times in interviews, you can only control what you can control as a player, and that’s playing to a certain level that you believe is good enough to be in that squad.
“It’s important that you play regularly and I’m doing both at the minute. I feel like I’m in a good place, and it’s not gone my way.
“But I’m focused on West Ham, doing my best for this club and enjoying every minute of it, so long that may that continue.”
Switching attention to Thursday night’s record-breaking victory, as West Ham made it 17 games unbeaten in Europe, which is the longest-ever streak by a British team, Ward-Prowse was delighted with the outcome.
“It’s a tough place to come, I thought it was a fantastic atmosphere for us to play in,” he said.
“We knew it would be difficult, but to be fair we started the game really well. They grew into it, caused us a few tactical problems in the second half and as you can see, the pitch wasn’t ideal. But I thought we did well.
“It was a typical sort of European away game and sometimes it’s not how well you play, it’s about the result and most importantly we’ve come away with an important win.”
On grabbing his third assist of the season, Ward-Prowse said it was “exciting” to be responsible for the majority of West Ham’s set-pieces.
“You’ve got lads in the middle who are desperate to score and they all come to me individually and tell me exactly where they want it, so I’ve got four or five different options.
“It’s been a good weapon for us so far this season and hopefully it can continue.”
With Ward-Prowse in such impressive form, having grabbed three goals and the same number of assists since joining from Southampton in the summer, TNT Sports pundit Joe Cole believes the Hammers can be the “most dangerous team in Europe” from set-pieces.
Cole said: “I think West Ham will go and be the best team in Europe at set-pieces this year. They’ve got all the ingredients, they attack the ball well, they’ve got goals.
“If I were tasked with devising a strategy against West Ham, I’d find it challenging to counteract the exceptional delivery and quality they possess. West Ham currently find themselves in an excellent position.”
West Ham’s upcoming Europa League match is scheduled against Olympiacos on October 26th.