Euro 2016: Arsene Wenger does not believe Jamie Vardy will start for England
The Arsenal manager claimed Vardy deserved his place in the squad but not the starting lineup
England kick off their Euro 2016 campaign against Russia at the Stade Velodrome in Marseille on 11 June but Arsene Wenger does not expect Jamie Vardy to be named in the starting lineup. The Arsenal manager, who is reportedly chasing the Leicester City striker’s signature, believes Vardy does not have enough experience on the international front yet.
The Gunners are chasing the 29-year-old’s signature after triggering his release clause last week. The north London side are expected to pay a fee of approximately £22m to secure his signature. They were confident of wrapping up the deal before the England squad left for France but Vardy has not yet committed to the deal with the Foxes also trying to offer him a new deal with increased wages.
The Three Lions struggled against Portugal with all three of Wayne Rooney, Harry Kane and Vardy starting in attack. Kane and Vardy were deployed wide on either flank while Rooney played in the centre, and the strategy was hardly effective as Roy Hodgson’s side huffed and puffed to a 1-0 win over 10 men thanks to a Chris Smalling goal late in the game.
Even Kane admitted that they were not good enough but said that the understanding between the forwards was “not going to happen overnight”.
Vardy lacks the experience to start at Euro: Wenger
Speaking of Vardy and the England attack, Wenger told beIN Sports that he did not think Vardy would start at the Euros.
“I don’t think that Vardy will be a starter [for England at Euro],” the French manager said. “He has earned his place in the squad.”
“I don’t say this because he does not have the quality, but he doesn’t have enough experience at that level to say the whole tournament will depend on Vardy.
“Will he be there? Certainly.”
Vardy set the Premier League alight this season scoring 24 goals to lead Leicester City to their first ever league title win, overcoming 5000/1 odds under Claudio Ranieri. In the process, he also set a new Premier League record by scoring in 11 consecutive games, breaking Ruud van Nistelrooy’s long-standing record, ironically in a game against Manchester United.
He made his England debut in June last year and eventually made it to the squad for the Euro 2016 qualifiers. He scored his first goal for England in a 3-2 win over Germany before scoring again three days later against Netherlands. In all, he has three goals for England.
Wenger also made a note of his searing pace and what defenders have done to counter the pace most strikers now have in their arsenal.
“Football progresses always,” Wenger explained. “The offences creates a new problem, the defence responds. What has happened in the last 10 years is that the strikers have become quicker and quicker.
“What’s happened? The defence have responded by creating quicker and quicker defenders.”