Toney handed first England call-up ahead of Italy and Germany games

·2-min read

Ivan Toney has been handed his first England call-up ahead of the Nations League fixtures against Italy and Germany this month.

The Brentford striker, who has not been capped by his country at any age level, has scored five Premier League goals this season – a tally only bettered by Erling Haaland (10) and Aleksandar Mitrovic (six).

Only Haaland (11) has been involved in more Premier League goals than Toney (five goals, two assists) so far this term. Toney is also averaging one goal contribution every 77 minutes this season, compared to one every 171 minutes last campaign.

Toney was overlooked by Gareth Southgate for England's Nations League outings in June, with Roma's Tammy Abraham named as back-up for captain Harry Kane.

But all three strikers will meet up with the squad for this month's matches, in which England will bid to avoid a humiliating relegation from Group A3. England play Italy on September 23 in Milan, before tackling Germany at Wembley three days later.

Ivan Toney
Ivan Toney

Manchester United winger Jadon Sancho has failed to force his way back into contention despite the Red Devils' improved Premier League form, while club-mate Marcus Rashford is absent after struggling with an injury.

United skipper Harry Maguire retains his place despite starting just two of his club's six Premier League games – both of which ended in defeat.

Maguire could be joined at the back by United team-mate Luke Shaw, who is one of four defenders to earn a recall to the 28-man squad, alongside Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ben Chilwell and Eric Dier.

Regular goalkeeper Jordan Pickford is another who is absent through injury, with Nottingham Forest's on-loan shot-stopper Dean Henderson stepping in.

Chelsea's Conor Gallagher and Leicester City's James Justin drop out having featured in June's squad, leaving them with much work to do ahead of the World Cup beginning in November.

England squad: Dean Henderson (Nottingham Forest), Nick Pope (Newcastle United), Aaron Ramsdale (Arsenal); Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Ben Chilwell (Chelsea), Conor Coady (Everton), Eric Dier (Tottenham), Marc Guehi (Crystal Palace), Reece James (Chelsea), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Luke Shaw (Manchester United), John Stones (Manchester City), Fikayo Tomori (Milan), Kieran Trippier (Newcastle United), Kyle Walker (Manchester City); Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Kalvin Phillips (Manchester City), Declan Rice (West Ham), James Ward-Prowse (Southampton), Jarrod Bowen (West Ham), Phil Foden (Manchester City), Jack Grealish (Manchester City), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal); Raheem Sterling (Chelsea), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Tammy Abraham (Roma), Ivan Toney (Brentford).