‘We’re all with you’ - Arsenal show Ben White support after exit from England World Cup camp

‘We’re all with you’ - Arsenal show Ben White support after exit from England World Cup camp

Arsenal have shown their support for Ben White after he suddenly left England’s World Cup squad in Qatar.

The Three Lions announced on Wednesday evening that versatile defender White had exited their training base in Al Wakrah and gone back home for personal reasons, with his return not expected during this tournament.

The 25-year-old did not play for England in any of their three Group B matches against Iran, the United States and Wales, missing the latter game altogether through illness having not trained in the build-up.

“Ben White has left England’s training base in Al Wakrah and returned home for personal reasons,” read England’s official statement.

“The Arsenal defender is not expected to return to the squad for the remainder of the tournament. We ask that the player’s privacy is respected at this moment in time.”

Arsenal quickly showed their support for a player whose consistent defensive displays and sheer versatility - spending much of the campaign at right-back - have been key to a surprise Premier League title push under Mikel Arteta this term.

“We’re all with you, Ben,” the top-flight leaders tweeted alongside a picture of the player and a heart emoji.

White’s withdrawal means England are left with 25 players for the remainder of their World Cup campaign, with Senegal up next in the last-16 at Al Bayt Stadium on Sunday evening.

Manager Gareth Southgate has plenty of defensive options at his disposal, with Harry Maguire and John Stones the preferred centre-back pairing so far alongside full-backs Kieran Trippier and Luke Shaw.

Manchester City’s Kyle Walker also returned to play a crucial 57 minutes for England in Tuesday’s 3-0 win over Wales in Al Rayyan, having got back to full fitness after groin surgery undergone in October.

Eric Dier, Conor Coady and Trent Alexander-Arnold are the other defenders available to Southgate in Qatar, with the likes of Declan Rice also capable of filling in at the back if required.